How to Win Friends and Influence People By DALE CARNEGIE

Six Ways to Make People Like You

In this blog you will learn Principles overview of “How to Win Friends and Influence People” (Related to the Chapter # 2)


1st Principle Overview:

One of the fundamental keys to successful human relations is understanding that other people may be totally wrong, but they don’t think they are.

Don’t condemn them; try to understand them.

“There is a reason why the other man thinks and acts as he does. Ferret out that reason — and you have the key to his actions, perhaps to his personality.”

If we ask ourselves, “how would I feel or react if I were in his shoes?” we’ll save ourselves a lot of time and frustration, because we’ll better understand his perspective. Success in dealing with people relies on being able to have a clear grasp of the other person’s viewpoint.

Accept the other person’s viewpoint. Determine what you say by what you’d want to hear if you were the listener. These skills will take time to develop, but will help you avoid conflict and get better results.

Practice Principle 1:

Next time you’re about to ask someone to buy your product or contribute to your favorite charity or do you a favor, pause first.

Make a list of reasons that you want them to do it, and a list of reasons that they would want to do it. When you’re writing your email, your website copy, or opening your conversation, only mention the reasons from their list, and none of the ones from your list.


2nd Principle Overview:

It’s much easier to listen to unpleasant things after we’ve been praised for our good points. That’s why the first step to changing people without offending them is to begin with appreciation for their strengths.

For example, if a colleague writes a speech for a conference that we feel is too lengthy or inappropriate for that particular audience, we might start by complimenting her speech and noting that it would make for a great blog post.

We could point out a few reasons it would be better suited for a written post than a speech, but chances are that even from our first mention, she’ll come to realize our point. Because we told her it would be a great fit for something else, she’s not offended that we thought it was a bad fit for the conference.

“Beginning with praise is like the dentist who begins his work with Novocain. The patient still gets a drilling, but the Novocain kills the pain.”

Practice Principle 2:

The key is an age-old technique called a ‘criticism sandwich.’ When you’re going to offer negative feedback, start with a compliment. Then segue into the meat and potatoes: the criticism. Finally, and more importantly, part ways with another positive compliment.

As Jonah Berger, Wharton professor and New York Times best-selling author, puts it, “It’s amazing what a little positive at the beginning and end can do.”


3rd Principle Overview:

A person’s name is a very powerful thing — it’s an embodiment of that person’s identity. It’s a reference to them. So remembering and using someone’s name is a great way to make that person feel important.

“The average person is more interested in his or her own name than in all the other names on earth put together.”

Calling someone by their name is like paying them a very subtle compliment. Conversely, forgetting or misspelling someone’s name can have the opposite effect and make it feel as though we are distant and disinterested in them.

Remembering and using people’s names is also a critical component of good leadership. The executive who can’t remember his employees’ names can’t remember a significant part of his business, and is operating on quicksand.

Yet, most people don’t remember names for the simple reason that they don’t put in the effort to. We make excuses that we are too busy. We are introduced to a stranger and forget his name only a few minutes later.

Practice Principle 3:

Next time you meet someone new, make a sincere effort to remember her name. Repeat her name several times and try to associate it in your mind with her features or expression, or something you’ve learned about her.

If it is an uncommon name, ask her to repeat it or spell it for you. Then write it down later so you can visualize the name too.

Free Tool: Just as asking someone to repeat their name for the fifth time can be taken as frustrating, so can asking “have you seen my email yet?” With Sidekick, you can see when your emails are opened and avoid having to irk recipients with continuous probing.


4th Principle Overview:

Carnegie explains that he once attended a dinner party where he met a botanist whom he found to be absolutely fascinating. He listened for hours with excitement as the botanist spoke of exotic plants and indoor gardens, until the party ended and everyone left.

Before leaving, the botanist told the host of the dinner party that Carnegie was a “most interesting conversationalist” and gave him several compliments.

Of course, Carnegie had hardly said anything at all. What he had done was listen intently. He listened because he was genuinely interested.

“And so I had him thinking of me as a good conversationalist when, in reality, I had been merely a good listener and had encouraged him to talk,” Carnegie notes.

Even the most ill-tempered person, the most violent critic, will often be subdued in the presence of a patient, sympathetic listener.

Take for example, a store clerk. If the clerk constantly interrupts and irritates customers, those customers are more likely to start arguments and bring frustrations and complaints to the store manager. But a clerk who is willing to listen could calm even a customer who storms in already angry.

Most of us are so concerned with what we are going to say next that we don’t truly listen when someone else is speaking. Yet, most people would prefer a good listener to a good talker.

“If you want to know how to make people shun you and laugh at you behind your back and even despise you, here is the recipe: Never listen to anyone for long. Talk incessantly about yourself. If you have an idea while the other person is talking, don’t wait for him or her to finish: bust right in and interrupt in the middle of a sentence.”

Remember that the people we are talking to are a hundred times more interested in themselves and their own problems than they are in us and our problems.

Practice Principle 4:

Next time you have a conversation, pay attention to how much of the conversation is you talking vs. the other person talking. How much listening are you doing?

Aim to do 75% listening and 25% talking.

As you practice this, pay attention to what causes you to jump in with more talking. Are you filling awkward silences? Do you tend to get carried away when you tell stories or share ideas? Think of some ways you can encourage the other person to do more of the sharing.


5th Principle Overview:

We now understand that people like to talk about themselves and have others be interested in them. The next best thing to talking about themselves is talking about the things that they enjoy.

Whenever Theodore Roosevelt expected a visitor, he would stay up late the night before, reading up on whatever subject he knew particularly interested his guest. And that is because Roosevelt was keenly aware of the following idea:

“The royal road to a person’s heart is to talk about the things he or she treasures most.”

Carnegie describes a story from a man named Edward Chalif, who was planning to ask the president of one of the largest corporations in America to pay for his son to go on a Boy Scout trip.

Before Mr. Chalif went to see him, he had heard that this man had drawn up a check for a million dollars, and that after it was canceled, he had had it framed. Upon meeting the man, he mentioned how much he admired the check and would love to see it.

The man was thrilled! He talked about the check for some time, until he realized he hadn’t asked why Mr. Chalif was there to see him. When Mr. Chalif mentioned his request, the man agreed without any questions and even offered to fund the trip for several other boys as well.

Mr. Chalif later explained, “If I hadn’t found out what he was interested in, and got him warmed up first, I wouldn’t have found him one-tenth as easy to approach.”

Talking in terms of the other person’s interests benefits both parties.


6th Principle Overview:

How often do we notice someone who looks very down, or bored — perhaps someone whose job is very repetitive or someone whose boss doesn’t give him or her much recognition? Maybe it’s a store clerk, or the mailman, or our hair dresser. What could we say to that person to cheer them up?

We could think of something about them that we honestly admire. This might sometimes be difficult with a stranger, but we should push ourselves to think of something, and mention it to them.

When Carnegie describes having this type of interactions with a stranger, he notes that many people have asked him what he was trying to get out of the person. His response:

“If we are so contemptibly selfish that we can’t radiate a little happiness and pass on a bit of honest appreciation without trying to get something out of the other person in return — if our souls are no bigger than sour crab apples, we shall meet with the failure we so richly deserve.”

In other words, we should all be happy — and excited — to do something for someone else when they can’t do anything for us in return. As we’ve reiterated throughout each of these principles,the one all-important law of human conduct is to always make the other person feel important.

And just as the Golden Rule states, “Do unto others as you would have others do unto you.”

Practice Principle 6:

Find someone who doesn’t appear to be having a good day — perhaps a demotivated colleague, an overworked waitress, or a man selling newspapers on the corner. Go out of your way to offer words of kindness to that person through a genuine compliment. Aim to do this at least once every day.