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There are many everyday situations on-the-job where you will need to use persuasive writing skills. Review the prompts listed in the attached document. Choose


prompt. Write the appropriate persuasive message USING either the ADA (Attention/Desire/Action) structure, explained in the Persuasion PowerPoint document or MMS (Monroe’s Motivated sequence)

You know the perfect location for the annual department meeting/conference. It happens to be
your favorite vacation spot. You really want the week-long conference to be held in this
location and you would like to bring your family. Choose a location for this assignment. Write a
persuasive request convincing the trip’s coordinator that this is the best location and that
employees should be permitted to bring families.
You want to buy a holiday gift for the person you work for. You want the other employees to
donate money so the gift will be from everyone. Some of your colleagues are against the idea
for various reasons. Write a persuasive message convincing them to participate.
At work, there is an informal policy requiring the celebration of the birthday of every employee.
This means that everyone in the department has to contribute to the birthday cake/greeting
card fund. You (and many of your co-workers) think that this tradition is expensive and
annoying for a variety of reasons (expense, not everyone eats cake, breaks into the work day
when you have to sing the birthday song, etc.). Develop a persuasive message to the manager
and staff building a case to end this activity.
A fellow employee has proposed that all the staff should be able to bring their pets to work.
You are against this idea for a variety of reasons. Your manager has asked for feedback from the
staff. Write a persuasive message regarding keeping your workplace a “pet-free” environment.
Your cousin recently landed a great job at an organization and you would like to work there,
too. You and your cousin have different work habits and personalities, but you are in the same
field (for this assignment choose a profession and a company). Prepare a persuasive message
convincing your cousin that he/she should introduce you and recommend you for a job. You
already have the feeling that he/she may be reluctant to comply.
You are part of a committee that is in charge of employee retention and morale. You have
researched the idea of “nap rooms” -these are designated quiet areas in the company building
where employees can relax and even take a short nap. Your workplace is very conservative with
many older workers who might find this idea amusing (choose an organization or type of
business for this assignment). Prepare a persuasive message to convince the committee to
recommend this concept to management.
You are in charge of boosting employee morale at your office. You believe the celebration of
employee birthdays (buying birthday treats, singing happy birthday and sharing cake on
everyone’s birthday) is a good idea. Your manager and some employees have expressed that
this can be expensive and annoying. Develop a persuasive message promoting your idea.
You work in a sales department and you would like to meet potential customers outside the
office more frequently. You believe you should not have to stick to the usual “one hour” lunch
break and you would like to be given free time in the afternoon one or two days each week (to
meet with people). Your manager is regimented and thinks sales people can do their jobs in the
office. Develop a persuasive message that builds your case (you can create your own sales
position/product if you choose to).
You would like to have your own parking space at work. Your job requires you to come and go
frequently. No one, other than the organization’s president, has their own designated parking
space. Develop a persuasive message building a case for your request.
Your cousin wants you to help him/her get a job at your place of work. You already know this
person’s personality and work ethic will not fit with the culture of your firm. You do not want
your cousin to think you do not want to help in their job search. You found an organization that
might be a better “fit” professionally. Develop a persuasive message convincing your cousin not
to apply at your organization and, instead consider the firm you researched.
You love your pet (dog or cat) and you want to be able to bring it to work with you. You realize
that if the owner of the organization allows you to bring a pet, the policy would have to be
extended to all employees. Develop a persuasive message to colleagues and staff in an attempt
to get them on board with your request.
You support a charity (choose one) and you convinced your manager to sponsor a (bike
race/10k run/golf outing/Gala auction and dinner). He/she will only oblige if you can get a team
of people to participate in the event, which is on a Saturday. Now you need your colleagues to
join a “team” to (race/run/golf or be part of a corporate table at the auction). You need 15
people to participate. Write a persuasive message that will convince them to give up a Saturday
for the event.
Chapter Ten
Writing Persuasive Messages and
Copyright © 2018 McGraw-Hill Education. All rights reserved. No reproduction or distribution permitted without the prior written consent of McGraw-Hill Education.
Persuasion Advice
â–ª Know your readers.
â–ª Choose and develop
targeted reader
â–ª Make good use of
â–ª Make it easy for
readers to comply.
©McGraw-Hill Education.
Image: © Brand X Pictures/PunchStock
Get to Know Your Readers
â–ª Formally gathered
demographic and
â–ª Informally gathered
information: customer
notes, info from service
personnel and other
employees, study of
other successful
©McGraw-Hill Education.
Image: © Jim Whitmer
Identify Benefits
â–ª Winning reader
benefits can be
â–ª They can also be
• intrinsic.
• extrinsic.
©McGraw-Hill Education.
Image: © David Zalubowski/AP Images
Make It Easy
▪ Don’t neglect the
action part of the
â–ª Make the desired
action clear.
â–ª Make the desired
action as easy as
possible to perform.
©McGraw-Hill Education.
Image: FrancescoCorticchia/Getty Images
Persuasive Requests
Your goal is to ask for
something the reader
is likely to oppose.
You must develop a
strategy that will
convince the reader
to comply.
©McGraw-Hill Education.
Image: gvictoria/Getty Images
Writing Plan for a
Persuasive Request
Capture the reader’s attention.
Describe a problem, state something
unexpected, suggest reader benefits,
offer praise or compliments, or ask a
stimulating question.
©McGraw-Hill Education.
Writing Persuasive Requests
â–ª Open with words that
• set up the strategy.
• gain attention.
â–ª Present the strategy (the persuasion), using
persuasive language and the you-viewpoint.
â–ª As a logical follow-up, make the request clearly and
without negatives.
â–ª End the message with the request or with words that
recall the appeal.
©McGraw-Hill Education.
Writing Plan for a
Persuasive Request
Motivate action.
â–ª Ask for a particular action.
â–ª Make it easy to respond.
â–ª Show courtesy, respect, and
©McGraw-Hill Education.
Capture the ATTENTION of the reader.
Offer something valuable, promise a
benefit, ask a question, provide a
quotation, and so forth.
©McGraw-Hill Education.
Sales Messages
Sales techniques are
â–ª in writing other
â–ª in actual sales
â–ª in selling yourself.
©McGraw-Hill Education.
Image: ©Hill Street Studios/Blend Images
Conventional Plan
â–ª Gain attention.
â–ª Present the sales message using imagination,
persuasive language, and the you-viewpoint.
â–ª Enhance the message with visuals.
â–ª Make the sales request.
â–ª Urge immediate action through a postscript.
â–ª In emails, offer opt-out for reader.
©McGraw-Hill Education.
Capture the ATTENTION of the reader.
Offer something valuable, promise a
benefit, ask a question, provide a
quotation, and so forth.
©McGraw-Hill Education.
to get audience to listen
“I want to hear what you have to say”
to get audience to feel a need or want
“I agree. I have that need/want
to tell audience how to fill need or want “I see your solution will work”
to get audience to see benefits of
“This is a great idea”
to get audience to take action
“I want it”
Step 1: Get Attention– Through the use of attention getting devices, you will aim to do two basic
things: get the audience’s attention, and ease the audience into the Proposal.
Step 2: Build the Need/Want– In this step, you will work to get your audience to feel a need or
want, whichever you determine to be appropriate. This is accomplished via four steps:
A. Statement: give a definite, concise statement of what the need or want is.
B. Illustration: give one or more examples illustrating the need or want. This is where you try to
“”paint pictures”” verbally to really get audience to feel that need or want.
C. Ramification: here you can offer additional evidence, such as statistics/testimony/examples
which give even more weight to the need or want.
D. Pointing: this is where you really point out how this need or want is directly related and
important to the audience.
Step 3: Satisfy the Need/Want– In this step, you will now fill the need/want you built in step 2.
It is vital that you be consistent; i.e., be sure the solutions you offer really does fit the need/want.
There are five steps here:
A. Statement: tell your audience in a very specific, direct sentence what it is you want them to
B. Explanation: Explain what exactly it is you are proposing.
C. This is where you make it clear how what you are recommending fulfills the need you built in
step 2.
D. Reference to Practical Experience: This is where you bring in external evidence supporting
the value of your proposal.
E. Meeting Objections: here you anticipate counter-arguments and you pre-empt them, i.e.,
address them before the audience has time to actually bring them up.
Step 4: Visualizing the Results– In this step you are working to intensify your audience’s desire
to accept your proposal. This is often called the projection step because it looks forward to the
future. There are three options here:
Option A: The Positive Method: Using this method, you offer vivid descriptions of how the
audience will benefit as a result of accepting your proposal.
Option B: The Negative Method: Using this method, you offer vivid descriptions of how the
person will regret not accepting your proposal.
Option C: The Contrast Method: Using this method, you combine the previous two methods,
addressing negatives first, and positives second.
Step 5: Call for Action– This step is the final call for the audience to actually sign on and accept
your proposal, the “go out and get it already” step. It should be brief, powerful, and well worded.
End on a strong note.

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