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Top Ten Neurolinguisitc Programming NLP Techniques For Business Part II

May 6, 2008
This is part II of a two part article identifying the top 10 NLP techniques that can be used in business.


Neurolinguistic programming's Meta Model is a tool to understand, on a deep level, what people are saying. It is extremely useful in business as well as in other areas of life.

Suppose Bob reports to you "All my projects are going well". You might feel happy about the situation, and then be surprised a week later when a major client calls up complaining that he has not received the report your company promised him. You are blindsided and embarrassed.

Upon speaking to Bob, you may find, for example:

* He had forgotten you had assigned the project to him; or
* Although he knew the deadline the client had given, he actually knew the project would take two weeks more than that, and was pleasantly surprised that he was only one week behind schedule.

If you had used the meta model you might have asked:

* What projects in particular are going well?
* What does "going well" mean? Are they on time? On budget? Is the deliverable up to the standard the client is expecting?

Had you asked these question you might have avoided the embarrassing call with the client. The Meta Model provides a framework in business for becoming aware of where the gaps in your information are, and tools for filling in those gaps through questions.


Perceptual positions are a concept in Neuro Linguistic Programming that refers to the concept of "I", "You", "We", "They" etc. These positions are vital for effective business decisions.

When we experience the world, we tend to do so from the position of "me" or "I". What do I want? How will this affect me? While this is a perfectly valied way to see the world, it is not the only way. When we realize this and internalize this knowledge, then we can begin to gain further valuable information about the business issues and the world around us.

We can begin to ask questions like:

* What do I want out of this?
* What does my client want?
* What does my boss want? What do my colleagues want?
* What answer will best serve the interests of all the parties?
* How will this impact on the organization as a whole? How will it affect the relationship between the organization, its customers and suppliers?
* How will it affect investors, shareholders and lenders?
* How will this affect the wider system? The world?
* How will it affect all these parties tomorrow?

If all business decisions were made after considering all the possible perceptual positions, they would likely lead to better results and less disastrous decisions!

NLP offers systematic tools for considering a situation from multiple perspectives, and to do so in such a way that we truly experience the situation from thus other business perspectives.


In Neurolinguistic Programming, a "strategy" does not refer to a corporate plan, or financial structure, rather it refers to the way in which an individual does (or does not do) something..

Neuro Linguistic Programming states that we make decisions and undertake behaviors in a systematic way, which is to say that the we will be doing the same things within our mind each time we make a decision or undertake a behavior. This explains why people have the same problem all the time (or nearly all the time): they are always, or nearly always, late with their projects, or always early; they always get on well with clients, or always get on badly.

By studying the strategies of employees who out-perform, or underperform, their peers, we can identify what strategies work in the business, and which do not. This allows us to:

* Help underperforming employees to change their under-performing strategies; or
* Systematically teach the skills of business superstars to other employees.
Similarly, studying the strategies of clients, for example their buying strategy or their regret (or non-regret) strategy, we can increase sales and create loyal customers.


Neuro Linguistic Programming teaches that each individual is unique and their world view, beliefs, values, memories, experiences, skills etc are unique.

The closest NLP gets to general classes of behavior is in the NLP concept of Meta Programs. Meta Programs are extremely useful in business because it offers a quick and easily applied tool for determining an individuals strengths and weaknesses, and how they will react in a given situation. In this sense it is similar to the Myers Briggs or similar tools used in business, for example in recruiting. The benefit of the Meta Program system is that it allows the information to be gathered in a purely conversational manner, using a relatively small number of simple questions.


Dealing with employees, suppliers, customers and other individuals in a business environment can be difficult precisely because they are individuals.. As a result they have good days and bad days, and if we have to deal with them on a bad day, watch out!

The neuro linguistic programming coaching pattern allows us to conversationally change a persons mood, and move them into exactly the resourceful state they need to have, exactly at the time that they need it.

The coaching model is one of the many patterns and techniques we teach on our NLP trainings here in New York.
About the Author
Shawn Carson has 20 years of business and consulting experience, delivering consulting projects to middle market and public company clients. Shawn is an NLP Master Practitioner and Trainer, and runs Neuro Linguistic Programming courses in New York. www.nlptrainingnewyork.com 212-714-3574
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