Tag Archives: deception

Podcast 170 – Eye Contact: Deception or Influence?

The New Year is here and your influence skills are more critical than ever.  You have heard enough about goals – so let’s focus on those persuasion tools.  Does your eye contact help you influence or does it trigger deception cues?  Are you reading your prospect’s eyes to adjust your presentation?  Let’s find out the power of your eyes.

Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “The eyes of men converse as much as their tongues.” The more common phrase we hear is “the eyes are the windows to the soul.” Through our eyes, we can gauge the truthfulness, attitude, and feelings of a speaker. Not making the proper amount of eye contact can have devastating results. Our pupils are one of the most sensitive and complicated parts of our body. They react to light, but they also respond to our emotions, revealing a variety of feelings.

Making eye contact can also convey love or passion. In a number of studies on eye contact and attraction, researchers found that simply looking into one another’s eyes can create passionate feelings. In one particular case, two members of the opposite sex who were complete strangers were found to have amorous feelings toward each other after merely gazing into one another’s eyes.   In another study, beggars were interviewed about their “tactics” for getting donations. Several of the beggars stated that one of the very first things they tried to do was establish eye contact. They claimed that making eye contact made it harder for people to pretend they hadn’t seen them, to ignore them, or to just keep walking.  Other studies have shown that public speakers who make more eye contact, use pleasant facial expressions, and incorporate appropriate gestures into their speeches have more persuasive power than speakers who do not.

What do we need to know about the eyes?

Sunglasses – Hide the eyes and arouse distrust

Avoidance of eye contact – Lack of confidence

Less than 50% eye contact – Insincere and distant

Increased eye contact – Starting to accommodate or acceptance

Rapid blinking – Resistance to what has been done or said

Extended eye contact – Anger, love or frustration

Pupils dilate – Interested, and receptive

Episode 138 – The Last Missing Piece to Trust

Steve is back from the annual fly fishing trip in Montana and gives a scattered and incomprehensible account of it.   Kurt gets things back on track by doing what he hates most, hitting the “urkel” button for this week’s Geeky Article Moment.  Not sure why you call your kids by your dogs name?  Or call your kids by the wrong name?  We know why. 

An interesting study was conducted with dentists, whereby an ad was put in the newspaper asking for people to participate in a painful dental procedure.  The first amazing thing about it was that people actually showed up. During the first part of the study, the dentists were told that they would only pretend to use a painkiller on their patients. A placebo would actually be given. The dentists were instructed to do everything just as they would normally do during the procedure. Most of the patients in this half of the study felt pain during their dental procedure. During the second half of the study, the dentists were told to perform the exact same procedure, except this time they would be administering a real painkiller to their patients. When told that the dentist was going to numb their mouths, most of these patients did not feel pain. The reality was, however, that unbeknownst to dentist or patient, a placebo had again been administered again in place of the painkiller. Even though in the dentists’ minds they had performed the exact same procedure with both sets of patients, the first group of patients picked up on incongruities in the dentists’ behavior. Consciously or subconsciously, they knew that something was wrong and thus felt pain.

Are you congruent with your history, your last interaction, and your reputation? Does your nonverbal behavior match your actions? Are your emotions congruent with your message? What are your audience’s expectations of you and your message? When your past history and your message don’t match, flags of incongruity will wave in your audience’s face. Suspicion will be roused and your audience will start to look for things that are wrong with you or your message. This inconsistency will decrease your ability to gain influence and trust. That’s because humans are natural lie detectors. When we attempt to fake congruence, we must also spend our time and energy trying to fake our message.

Episode 134 – Signs of Deception

You know that face some people make when they’re just sitting there not doing anything, but they look really mad?  Kurt has discovered a very scientific term for that.  Check out the show to find out.

For today’s “geeky article”, Kurt is once again forced to press the “Steve Urkel” button.  Luckily it’s a good article about the “10 surprising facts about deception.” 

The worst thing for a persuader is that your audience members probably won’t ever confront you about your dishonesty or deception. They are not going to tell you that they think you are lying. They’ll just never work with you again and they’ll then tell all their family and friends about the bad experience they had with you behind your back.

Even if you’re an honest person of admirable character, it is human nature for people to cast sweeping judgments and formulate opinions without all the facts.  So, if you want genuine trust and lasting persuasion, you must avoid even the slightest appearance of anything that might be considered dishonest.  If you never place yourself in a situation where one might be misled about you or your integrity, then your good, hard-earned reputation will never be compromised.  Don’t embellish the story to make it sound better; don’t omit certain information to cover your own skin.

What are some nonverbal behaviors that will trigger incongruence and a sense of deception?

Forced eye contact

Shifting back in chair

Rubbing lips

Scratching your face

Dilated pupils


Pitch of voice rising

Episode 75 – Verbal Cues to Deception

Have you checked out www.universityofpersuasion.com yet?  Did you know that you can enroll in our 52 week persuasion course for as little as $7 a month?

Shameless plug over.  On this week’s episode, Kurt and Steve discuss a recent article that shows us how to exercise more effectively.  Yep.  Pushing through a difficult task (like exercise) is key to success in anything.  Kurt and Steve break down the article and discuss how we can use it in exercise and in business.

Due to listener demand, deception is back.  We all deal with it.  Prospects, family, kids, co-workers…they all have been known to deceive.  Hopefully most of the time it’s harmless.  But we’ve all suffered due to taking somebody’s word for it only to have them never come through.

There are two ways to detect deception.  Verbal cues and non-verbal cues.  On this episode Kurt and Steve focus on verbal cues.  The best “liars” are the ones who tell half truths with their deception.  Tune into the episode for some great pointers on how you can detect verbal deception!

Finally…the blunder of the week.  Or is it a ninja?  Steve isn’t really sure.  Due to a business trip he couldn’t get out of, he didn’t get to watch most of the Super Bowl.  From what he heard, the commercials during the Super Bowl this year were just downright depressing.  Kurt discusses whether this is an effective advertising technique or not.