People in France follow the classic power tool pattern except that they use stating more frequently than socializing.  Logical persuading (5.87) and stating (5.55) are their first choices when influencing others.  They will offer a logical argument or simply state what they want or believe.  The French excel at socializing (this technique is second-highest rated in effectiveness behind logical persuading), but their main thrust when trying to influence others is to use logic.

Because they use stating second only to logical persuading, they may be perceived as intimidating, but this is principally because of their willingness to be direct.  Moreover, they use exchanging significantly less frequently than people in many other cultures, which suggests that they prefer to present their views forthrightly and in a manner that seems reasonable to them, and by and large they don’t choose to bargain for cooperation.

For the French, character, history with the influencee, and attraction are the highest-rated power sources by far.  What matters is how you are thought of (your character), how well they know you, and how likable or attractive you are.  But this does not tell the whole story because, in France, your knowledge (another of the personal power sources) is significantly more important than in many other countries, as is your role in the organization.  How much you know, your credibility, and your role or status in an organization may be keys to how persuasive you can be.

To influence effectively in this culture, offer logical arguments and proofs for your position or request, and be willing to state what you want or believe, recognizing that they may be as candid as you in stating what they want or believe.  Don’t be intimidated.  A degree of candor is expected in this culture.  Use socializing to build relationships.  Their perception of your character is of paramount importance, and it will help if you are likable or charming, but what may matter as much is your role, position, or status in your organization (and in society at large) and the knowledge you bring to the table.  Being knowledgeable and having the right pedigree are important in France.


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