How to win friends and influence people

A few years ago I was fortunate enough to be sent on a half day course which introduced the concept of motivation and self-help, sponsored by Dale Carnegie. To be honest the course was not great but it did inspire me to seek out more information.

I got hold of the CD’s of Dale Carnegie’sHow to win friends and influence people” and listened to them on the way to work while in the car (in those days I had an hours drive to work, so it passed the time). Although all the examples were from the USA, mainly the Founder Fathers and past Presidents, he does make some good points. This book was first published in 1936 and has sold more than 15 Million copies worldwide.

I am not going to go into the detail of exactly what is in each section, but here is the rundown (taken from Wikipedia).

Fundamental Techniques in Handling People

“Don’t criticize, condemn or complain.”
“Give honest and sincere appreciation.”
“Arouse the other person an eager want.”

Six Ways to Make People Like You

“Become genuinely interested in other people.”
“Smile.”
“Remember that a man’s name is to him the sweetest and most important sound in any language.”
“Be a good listener. Encourage others to talk about themselves.”
“Talk in the terms of the other man’s interest.”
“Make the other person feel important and do it sincerely.”

Twelve Ways to Win People to Your Way of Thinking

“Avoid arguments.”
“Show respect for the other person’s opinions. Never tell someone they are wrong.”
“If you’re wrong, admit it quickly and emphatically.”
“Begin in a friendly way.”
“Start with questions the other person will answer yes to.”
“Let the other person do the talking.”
“Let the other person feel the idea is his/hers.”
“Try honestly to see things from the other person’s point of view.”
“Sympathize with the other person.”
“Appeal to noble motives.”
“Dramatize your ideas.”
“Throw down a challenge.”

Nine Ways to Change People Without Giving Offense or Arousing Resentment

“Begin with praise and honest appreciation.”
“Call attention to other people’s mistakes indirectly.”
“Talk about your own mistakes first.”
“Ask questions instead of giving direct orders.”
“Let the other person save face.”
“Praise every improvement.”
“Give them a fine reputation to live up to.”
“Encourage them by making their faults seem easy to correct.”
“Make the other person happy about doing what you suggest.”

The audio book is well narrated and the examples (if a little corny at times) do make you think. I must say I am not a big reader, hence I got the audio book, but if you only read one self-help book in your lifetime I can heartily recommend this one.

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