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Kevin Hogan
Network 3000 Publishing
3432 Denmark #108
Eagan, MN 55123
(612) 616-0732








Influence: Being Assertive
Without Being a Jerk

by Kevin Hogan


This collection of memories has stuck with me for a long time.

When I first started doing public events about my book, Irresistible Attraction, I ran into a LOT of people who were taking "Assertiveness Training" of one kind or another. Probably a function of who I was interviewing. Or maybe Boeing and Microsoft were doing these gigs then, as it was their employees I was often meeting with.

Are you being assertive - or aggressive? "Assertiveness Training" often transformed normal and otherwise talented and intelligent individuals into complete idiots.

I began asking about the strange behavior of people which I observed and they often proudly shared their experiences.

Had I not been told, I would have been led to believe that people were doing "How to Be a Jerk Training," a specialization which for thousands of years, was reserved only for men. A majority of the people taking lessons (at least those who were visiting with me after events) in what they called "Assertiveness," were women.

Just what the world needed...more people behaving like men...!

Body Language, Tonality & Attitude

How did I figure out that otherwise normal people were using these bizarre, new communication strategies? It was in their body language, tonality, and attitude.

There is a big difference between hostility and certainty.

There is a big difference between aggressive and assertive.

There is a big difference between robbery and thinking about it.

The experiences these people shared, reminded me that what people are often looking for is "justice" or "revenge" instead of "being heard" and "being significant" and worthy of input.

Not every person I interviewed for the book had these newly built in characteristics. An awful lot did.

The problem that people who fail to assert themselves run into, is that they confuse assertion (having a meaningful voice) with aggression (bullying and/or gaining revenge).

The difficulty a lot of women face is that they believe that if they act like men, they will be more respected and feel better about themselves.

The research shows this is not the case.

The fact is that assertiveness and aggression have little if anything to do with each other.

And the research is clear, women who appear aggressive actually are much less respected by both men & women, so women lose twice.

Assertion is about "putting forward" an idea or thoughts and feelings when logical and appropriate.

Neither gender does this particularly well, so if you could find a real assertiveness training, it could be worth experiencing.

Let me give you an interesting scenario and observe how people "self and other-sabotage."

You'll recognize it...



How often have you experienced this?:

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Kevin Hogan
Network 3000 Publishing
3432 Denmark #108
Eagan, MN 55123
(612) 616-0732

Photo appears under license with istockphoto/Imabase.






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