July 3, 2023Read More
One of the Yale School of Management’s most popular classes is “Mastering Influence and Persuasion,” taught by assistant professor of marketing Zoe Chance. The course is so oversubscribed, Chance often rejects hundreds of applicants, according to Yale Daily News.
The class is structured as a challenge-based approach to helping students become influential. Each week, students complete three different types of challenges: a “getting” challenge, a “giving” challenge and a “gratitude” challenge. Collaboration is the core of the “getting” and “giving” challenges. According to Chance, “by asking for what they want, people are taking care of themselves, and by giving, they are building goodwill so that people will be willing to help them achieve their goals.”
The “giving” challenge helps with the shame that many individuals experience when asking for something. The “gratitude” challenge is a resilience exercise that helps students bounce back in the face of failure. An example of a “gratitude” challenge is an assignment where students write to a person who has made a difference in their lives without asking for anything in return.
The course is offered primarily for business school students in the Yale SOM; however, undergraduates can audit the course. Additionally, Chance is working on a Coursera version of the course that is slated for summer release, titled “How to Ask for Anything.”
Chance has also written a book (released on Feb 1), titled “Influence Is Your Superpower: The Science of Winning Hearts, Sparking Change, and Making Good Things Happen,” inspired by her class. While the class focuses on the experiential opportunity to practice influence, the book provides a much deeper dive into the subject of influence.