Tracy Beaker shares advice for life. There are times when everyone needs to persuade people to see things their way.
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My name is Tracy Beaker and these are my Survival Files.
-Your essential guide to the ups and downs of growing up.
Life in the Dumping Ground has taught me a lot about stuff.
Complicated stuff. Stuff that can make you want to scream.
If you can cope with the stuff that goes down in this place,
you can cope with anything.
I've spent most of my life here.
First, when I was a kid, and now, it's where I work.
I've learnt a lot about friends.
About what life can throw at you.
It's not always been pretty. But it's made me who I am today.
And now, I'm passing on my wisdom to you guys in a video blog.
Pay attention. I've lived through all this so you don't have to.
On The Tracy Beaker Survival Files this time, the art of persuasion.
There are times when we need to persuade people
to do things they don't want to.
What's the best way to get people
to do things your way?
Let me tell you something about life at the Dumping Ground.
You need to be able to get your point of view across.
-Tracy, I was watching that.
-I want to see the end.
-No, we're going to watch this.
-It wasn't a proper go.
-I want to do it!
-Shut up, shut up!
With any group of people living on top of each other,
you're going to get disagreements.
But with this lot, you get the Hundred Years' War.
-Can you two stop arguing?
-Right, that's enough.
'Everyone thinks they know best about everything.
'It's like one big bust-up that never stops.'
Can you all shut up?! Nooooooow!
This is why we need the art of persuasion.
To get others to see our point of view.
There are lots of ways of going about it.
Not just the Gina shouty method.
Carmen, what's the best way to get someone to do what you want?
You could do something for them. Or give them a present.
You mean bribery?
No, just, it'd be nice if they saw things the way you did.
To persuade people, you need to use brain power.
You got to be a smooth talker, ready with excuses and a plan B.
I don't need any of that.
I just quietly explain what might happen to people
if they don't agree with me, in graphic detail.
-And that works?
-Yeah, you'd be surprised.
Plenty of ideas there, from the good to the bad to the impractical
and, frankly, illegal.
How does it work in practice?
Take a look at persuasion power in action.
This was a classic siege situation.
One of the younger kids, Dolly,
had decided to move her bedroom into the bathroom.
# You got persuasion. #
Dolly, are you all right? You've been in there ages.
'Course I have, this is my bedsit.
-Unlock the door.
-I will do later,
when I've mixed some nice perfumes.
Oh! I left a load of cleaning stuff
-in there this morning.
It could be really dangerous
-if she mixes it up.
-Open the door!
-Ah, we'll have to get the ladder.
'How would you sort this out? With humour?'
I'll tell you my best joke.
Is it the one about the porcupine
-and the custard?
'Now, that only works if the humour
'is funny. What about kindness?'
Dolly, come out for Lulu. I'll do my elephant impression.
'Or vicious threats.'
If you don't come out in ten seconds,
I'll rip Bunny's head off.
Fat chance, squish-face, cos he's in here!
'Hmm, so far, so completely rubbish.
'To persuade Dolly to come out needed something special.
'And who would provide that? Who do you think?'
Dolly, I've got something special for you to borrow.
Something you really want,
but you're going to have to come out first.
'A little reward can go a long way.
'My generosity in giving up
'one of my customised Beaker jumpers
'solved the problem in no time.
I was always going to win that one,
but what about when the opponents are more evenly matched?
Hey, Maxy, show me.
'Like when Jenny and Maxy faced off
'in the great trainer showdown.'
Oh, that's the third pair in three months.
"My name is Senor Sole. Buongiorno. # O sole mio.# "
It's not funny. His clothing
allowance has just about gone.
New trainers definitely needed. The sensible ones that Jenny wanted
or the cool ones that Maxy craved?
In the Red Corner, care worker Jenny.
A no-nonsense professional with bags of experience.
In the Blue Corner, a talented newcomer.
Young Maxy was a true fighter. He never knew when he was beaten.
A boy of few words, but he always made them count.
You smell funny.
'You underestimated Maxy at your peril.'
Seconds out, round one, and Maxy was off to the perfect start.
The trainers he wanted were on his feet
and it looked like this could all
be over before it even started.
-These are the ones.
-They're very popular.
-You mean they're a fashion statement?
-I want them!
They don't look very strong, Maxy. Let's try a few others.
'In round two, Maxy went for
'a different tactic, the fake limp.'
'Check out those cries of pain.
'He could've won an Oscar, but not from Jenny.'
I can't believe these are the only ones that fit.
-Shall I wrap them up for you?
We are going to find a strong pair, aren't we, Maxy?
-They look fantastic.
'What a turnaround. Jenny seemed to have it in the bag.
'The sensible trainers were bought
'and they were about to head for home.
'How could Maxy recover?'
Let's lock this stuff and go and get an ice cream.
'One last push from Jenny to persuade Maxy
'to accept that he'd lost.'
Next time your allowance comes,
we'll get you the red ones as well, OK?
'She played a bit of good cop
'and some bad cop for good measure.'
I said, get in the van.
'Surely Maxy was beaten?'
'But no, Maxy was fighting back.'
'And then a moment of pure genius.'
'He had the keys
'and suddenly, the young underdog was in the driving seat.'
Jenny was a tough old bird. She wasn't giving up easily.
-Oh, thank goodness. What a day!
'Mike to the rescue with the spare keys.'
Now, Maxy my lad, not clever.
'Maxy was totally outplayed. Or so they thought.'
Hang on, I'll give you a hand.
'But Maxy had one more trick up his sleeve.'
No! No, no, no!
'Actually, the same trick.'
Max, open the door now.
'That was that. Jenny threw in the towel.'
-Where you going?
-Where do you think?
'You have to hand it to Maxy.'
Look, red ones!
'I'd have been proud of that result.'
I was not impressed with Maxy's behaviour that day.
He got what he wanted, but he was selfish and childish.
He wasted his clothing allowance and our time.
The look on Jenny's face was priceless, though.
What can we learn from Maxy's great victory?
He studied his opponent, worked out her weaknesses and used them
to his advantage. To get your own way with someone,
you've got to know exactly how they tick.
Here's how not to do it.
It was the day of Cam's wedding to Gary, but I'd said I wasn't going.
And that was final.
It's no biggy. You go to Cam
and what's-his-face's wedding.
-See you when you get back.
Don't want to be late. It's a very
special day. Come on, now. Chop-chop.
'It was going to take something
'special to change my mind.'
-You all right?
-Couldn't be better.
What's that behind your ear?
Don't move. There's another one.
Wow. If I was eight, I'd find that really exciting.
Money from behind the ear, Mike. Come on, I wasn't a baby!
-I was a highly intelligent, mature, sensitive teenager.
-Maybe I should have juggled bread rolls.
-Ha, very funny(!)
Or how about the old walking down the invisible staircase
behind the sofa routine?
That would have done the trick. Surely?
Mike was trying to cheer me up. To distract me.
But it wasn't what I needed. I needed someone to talk to.
About what was really on my mind.
Crash and Jackie realised this, and they came back.
-What's your problem?
-Isn't it obvious?
What do most married couples do?
-Buy matching jumpers.
-They have babies.
They're bound to have a baby. And it's, "Bye-bye, Tracy."
'Cam and Gary's big moment was minutes away.'
Come on. Let's get this show on the road.
'But now Crash and Jackie knew the real reason,
'they could start persuading me to change my mind.'
Cam wouldn't do that to you.
-You don't know that.
-Yes, I do.
-She loves you.
-Only a nutter would throw that away.
Before I pronounce you man and wife, it's my duty to ask
if there's anyone here that has
any objections to this marriage,
-then please speak now.
-Stop the wedding!
She's gone too far this time.
-Tracy, don't do this.
-I wanted to make sure I didn't miss the I dos.
It's the most important part of getting married.
Does that mean you want Gary and me to get married?
-And I do.
-And I do too.
I now pronounce you man and wife.
Though who I just married to who, I don't know.
'Jackie and Crash proved that the best kind of persuasion
'doesn't have to be about tricks or threats.
'It can be just as much about listening.
'Being a good listener is a great thing to be.'
So, what have we learnt
so far about persuasion to put into The Tracy Beaker Survival Files?
We like to get our own way from time to time.
There are many methods of persuading others that you're right.
Humour, or a little present, might help. But threats are best avoided.
That's not persuading people, that's just being mean or scary.
You might need to be persistent and try different tactics,
like Maxy did.
And remember to study the person. If you know how they tick,
you'll know what sort of persuasion works best on them.
If you do your homework,
you'll discover loads of persuasive options.
You won't have to rely on the Gina foghorn technique.
However, when there are a lot of people all struggling to be heard,
there will always be those who simply go for maximum volume.
We've got a few of those.
Gus, how do you go about persuading people to do what you want?
I tell them what needs to be done.
-Finish my story.
-I'll be right back.
And if they don't listen, I tell them a little bit louder.
Hurry, Tracy, story! Tracy! Story!
It's best to persuade people nicely.
I hate it when people get angry or shouty. Especially Johnny.
Tee will do what I say, when I say!
The nicely-nicely approach might work sometimes,
but it's about who can shout the loudest.
I hate you. You're weird. I hate that you're my brother!
'Nowadays, I prefer more subtle methods of persuasion.
But as a kid, I was never shy about expressing my feelings. Loudly.
What?! You said I was Child of the Week!
You're not supposed to tell us stuff, then change your mind!
You're still Child of the Week. But Louise is too.
I'm not Child of the Week!
Two childs make a children. Any thicko knows that!
'Let's face it, nobody could out-shout me.'
'My talent was legendary.
'I became an inspiration to others.'
The Beaker method, shout as loud
as you can, for as long as you can.
-I want chocolate!
ALL: WE WANT CHOCOLATE! WE WANT CHOCOLATE!
Sometimes, the most persuasive words aren't shouted or even spoken.
The power of the written word can be amazing,
as I discovered when I became an ace campaigning journalist.
Justine, why don't you take your bag upstairs?
Elaine the Pain was being hopeless, as usual.
She'd let Justine Littlewood keep a telly in her room,
which was against the rules. Elaine should have known.
What's in the bag?
Check this out.
A TV! You won't be allowed to keep that in your room.
-Elaine said I can.
-That is so unfair!
'I decided this had to stop. Elaine had to go.'
I'm going to get rid of Elaine the Pain for good.
Poor dopey Elaine won't even know what hit her.
'The Pain, herself, didn't get it, of course.'
It's not Justine's fault,
-so don't take it out on her.
I'm taking it out on you.
When the daily papers get hold of
my article about how you have favourites,
how you're always telling us stuff, then
changing your mind and break the rules,
your career is going to be over.
Get your hair done. You're going to be front-page news.
'The pen is mightier than
'the Pain. Surely victory was mine?
'Until Jenny got involved.'
-I've come to type up my article.
-May I see?
"Stupid Social Worker Gives Grieving Kids Grief
"In Tactless TV Treats Trauma."
Is that a stonker of a headline, or what?
"Social worker Elaine the Pain Boyak
"has upset the kids in her care.
"She's broken a house rule by giving
"permission for one of the girls,
"not even one of the nice ones, to have a TV in her room
"when the others aren't allowed."
-Don't stop. You're getting to the good bit.
"The Gazette says, 'Protect these poor,
"'defenceless children by giving this useless social worker the sack.'"
You can't print a story like this.
I knew you'd take sides with Elaine the rubbish Pain!
Elaine didn't get the sack.
But the set-back wouldn't be the end of my campaigning journalism.
I kept writing. Always fighting for justice.
# I want money
# That's what I want. #
A little while back,
money problems almost closed down the Dumping Ground.
They're going to shut us down
and move everyone somewhere cheaper.
I was gutted. Losing the Dumping Ground
would be like wiping out my past.
And everyone knows that Burneywood is a nightmare.
Our kids couldn't end up there.
I wish I could do something about it.
It's hard to make a difference on your own.
What if I wasn't on my own?
If enough people kick up a fuss,
it might force the council to stop.
Persuade is better than force.
Persuade it is, then.
'Gina was very positive, as usual(!)'
-It's a bad idea.
It's the only idea we've got.
I'll write an article. The newspaper said they'd print it.
That sounds like a "Tracy plan" to me.
-What exactly is a Tracy plan?
-It's the only option we've got.
-Something crazy to make people listen.
-That is a Tracy plan.
Tracy plans work!
'I fought as hard as I've ever fought in my life,
'but not with shouting and screaming.
'With a few well-chosen words in the local paper,
'to persuade their readers that the Dumping Ground should be saved.'
"We try to provide our young people with a proper, loving,
"stable place to live.
"Somewhere they feel safe and valued, where the staff
"really care about them, and they form real emotional ties.
"And just have fun, like real families do.
"Young people in care need to feel
"wanted, just like anybody else.
"They want to know their opinions
"matter. They like a challenge.
"Would you chuck your children out on the street
"because you didn't think they were worth the money?
"I don't think so.
"That's what the council are threatening to do here.
"We're not taking it. We're fighting back."
-Wow. That is genius.
-Looks good, doesn't it?
-Well done, guys.
Good stuff, right? Looking back, maybe I should have left it at that.
However, at the time, I was worried my words might not be enough.
So, I decided to take direct action.
-Don't let the council
close us down! Save our home!
-Stop the council from closing us down.
-Tracy! Come down!
-I want to get up there.
-You will stay where you are!
THE CHILDREN LAUGH
Save Elm Tree House! Don't let the council close us down!
-What is she doing?
-the council close us down!
-Milking it. And it's working.
Don't let the council throw our young people out.
Yes, but that's your problem, Tracy, you always take things too far.
-I had to do something.
-You didn't have to go on the roof.
'At first, it worked like a dream.
'Me on the roof, campaigning for justice.
'Getting my point across.
'What a brilliant idea, right?
'Turns out other people thought so too.'
'Lily also had a point to make.
'Matt and Christie had fostered her sisters.
'Now they wanted Lily to live with them.
'But she didn't want to go.
'And no-one had noticed that
'Christie had turned up to take her.'
Hi, Christie. It's a bit crazy here today.
I can see that. I can't bear the thought of
Lily being in all of this.
-Give me second.
-Why don't I just take her home?
I'll bring her back when things have calmed down.
-Mr Milligan! This ends now.
At last, someone from the council. Come with me.
I've got some people who'd love to ask you a few
questions about the funding for Elm Tree House.
No comment, absolutely no comment.
So, what was the story?
Everyone was listening to you and not taking any notice of me.
I didn't want to go, so I thought if it was good enough for you...
-Tracy, help me.
-What you doing? Go back inside.
Christie's here, she wants me to live with them.
-She's come to take me away.
Let's go inside and we can talk about it.
No. You promised you wouldn't let her take me.
She won't. Please, Lily, let's just go back inside.
'My big idea to get noticed
'suddenly didn't seem so clever.'
Lily! Please, get back in, off the roof!
No-one will listen to me.
I'm listening. Talk to me.
I keep getting things wrong.
I don't belong there.
Lily! Please! Lily, get off the roof now!
Tee, it's OK, she'll be fine.
'What a disaster. I still have
'nightmares about that moment.
'It wasn't as bad as it looked. Lily was OK in the end.
'But she still had to spend time in the hospital.'
'What made it all worse was that because of me,
'Mike's job was on the line.
'He had to face an investigation and a tribunal.'
It wasn't your fault.
You're looking for someone to blame and it's Mike!
You are not helping.
'I was scared we'd be saying goodbye to Mike forever.'
Mike's job was on the line.
And if things weren't bad enough, Harry, Frank and Liam
decided to "help" with the tribunal.
-I tried to stop them.
-Not hard enough.
-You can't sack Mike.
-Elm Tree house wouldn't be the same.
-No, you can't do this.
-We're begging you.
-Boys, this is not the time.
-Look at Harry, he's only little.
I am sorry the boys interrupted.
What they did was wrong, but it shows how everyone feels.
Mr Milligan's popularity is not in question.
He's the best father figure they've ever had.
The issue is one of indiscipline
-at Elm Tree House.
And this is just another example of that!
Why won't you people ever listen?
Pretending you know what's best for us.
-You ain't got a clue.
I am so disappointed in you.
Did you imagine for one second that this was going to help?
Our apologies, we won't make this
any harder than it already is.
We'll be leaving, come on.
Mike! Mike, wait!
I'm sure you meant well, but please, leave it. It's over.
'So that was that.
'The kids' attempt to persuade
'the tribunal had ended in disaster.
'Nothing could save Mike now. Or could it?'
-What's she doing here?
THE CHILDREN LAUGH
Here you go.
Have you come to say goodbye?
Thanks to Leanne's report,
the disciplinary panel found in may favour!
-I just told the truth.
I found a sensitive man, who's firm when he needs to be,
and always has the welfare of those
-in his care at heart.
That means we're all back together again.
THEY ALL LAUGH
You see, Mike is just amazing at his job.
He didn't need shouting or special campaigns,
or a bunch of kids bursting into a tribunal.
The facts spoke for themselves.
And that's the best kind of persuasion there is.
What have we learnt about Persuasion to
upload into my Survival Files?
It's good to learn to persuade people.
There are lots of ways of going about it.
Shouting the loudest can work, but that's really bullying,
not persuading. There are better ways.
Being nice to people, or offering little rewards or presents can work.
Being mean or threatening isn't the way I like doing things,
although some people do resort to that.
Clever words are brilliant,
whether they are spoken or written down.
Be careful, when you're trying to get your point across,
don't lose sight of the bigger picture
or someone could end up falling off a roof.
Other people may have good reasons for trying to get what they want.
Sometimes, it's good to allow yourself to be persuaded.
That's the Beaker guide to persuasion safely uploaded to
The Tracy Beaker Survival Files.
# With a little persuasion. #
More gems of wisdom from my experiences next time.
You don't need me to persuade you not to miss it.
Remember, I've been through all this so you don't have to.
# With a little persuasion
# With a little finesse
# I'll comply with any lie You're happy to express. #