How Can You Become a Friendlier Person?
I recently had the privilege of attending a Dale Carnegie course. It was one of the better training experiences I have had. Much of the training in influence today is based on personality assessments, and trying to tailor one's argument to one of several personality types. This can be counterproductive, because you have to train yourself to identify the various types, then to tailor your message to each of them. And what happens if you are presenting to several people at once, and they are different types?
The reason How to Win Friends and Influence people has been so successful for so long is that the tools outlined in the book can be universally applied. After the training, I decided that I could reinforce the teachings by doing homework. Specifically, for the past several weeks I have written posts about the principles Carnegie outlined as "Ways to become a friendlier person."
- Don't criticize, condemn, or complain.
- Give honest, sincere appreciation.
- Arouse in the other person an eager want.
- Become genuinely interested in other people.
- Remember that a person's name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language.
- Be a good listener. Encourage others to talk about themselves.
- Talk in terms of the other person's interests.
- Make the other person feel important - and do it sincerely.
There is a good deal of overlap between the principles, which is another way they can help to reinforce each other. I continue to try to practice them and have benefitted from writing these articles. I hope you have found them useful too.