The Influence Model

Using Reciprocity to Gain Influence

(Also known as the Cohen-Bradford Influence Model)

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AlexMotrenko

Learn how reciprocity can help you influence others.

Have you ever tried to get something – perhaps advice, support, or a key piece of information – from someone who didn't want to help you?

Sometimes, it can be extremely difficult to get people's help, especially when we have no authority over them. This is where an approach such as the Cohen-Bradford Influence Model can help us identify what other people value. We can then use that information so that everyone gets the outcome they want.

In this article we'll examine the Influence Model in detail, and discuss how you can use it when you need help from other people.

About the Model

The Influence Model, also known as the Cohen-Bradford Influence Model, was created by Allan R. Cohen and David L. Bradford, both leadership experts and distinguished professors. The model was originally published in their 2005 book, "Influence Without Authority."

Cohen and Bradford believe that authority can be problematic. It doesn't always guarantee that you'll get support and commitment from those around you; and it can create fear, and motivate people to act for the wrong reasons. This is why it's so useful to learn how to influence others without using authority.

The Influence Model is based on the law of reciprocity – the belief that all of the positive and negative things we do for (or to) others will be paid back over time.

For example, if you give your boss a tip that cuts hours off her workload, you might expect, perhaps subconsciously, that she'll do something nice for you in the future.

Using the Model

The Influence Model is useful whenever:...

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