By Dale Carnegie
Originally written in 1937, this book explains how to converse with people without losing control of your ego. We tend to lash out lose our temper when people don’t do what we want. Instead, Dale Carnegie explains how you can use techniques to appeal to another person’s ego, self-esteem, and use active listening to establish rapport with others.
Fundamental Techniques in Handling People
“A great man shows his greatness by the way he treats other men.”
Human beings are creatures of emotion rather than logic. When dealing with people, it is important to use understanding and forgiveness rather than criticism.
When people would criticize the south during the civil war, Abraham Lincoln would respond by saying, “Don’t criticize them, they are what we would be under similar circumstances.”
It is much more beneficial to work on improving yourself before you try and improve others. Try to understand people before you condemn them. Attempt to figure out why they do the things that they do.
Another great way to influence someone is by appealing to their need to feel important. By showing genuine appreciation for others can cause you to be a miracle for them.
Charles Schwab said, “There is nothing that kills the ambitions of a person as criticisms from superiors. I believe in giving incentive to work. I am anxious to praise but loath to find fault.
Ways to Make People Like You
“If you want to know how to make people laugh at you behind your back, never listen to anyone and talk incessantly about yourself.”
Be a good listener and encourage others to talk about themselves. By talking about the other person’s interest, you can establish rapport with them. You are making them feel important. When you genuinely listen to others, they subconsciously pick up on the fact that you are fully present and dialed in to their conversation.
Use the other person’s name. It’s a small action, but their name is the sweetest sound in any language to them. Napoleon Bonaparte claimed that he could remember the name of any person he ever met. He did this by repeating the person’s name several times during a conversation. For some people of importance, he would write their name down after they had left and memorized it.
How to Win People to Your Way of Thinking
“An argument end with each of the contestants more firmly convinced than ever that he is absolutely right.”
Even if you win an argument, you have truly lost because you are now an enemy of that person. Carnegie explains the power in phrases like, “I may be wrong, but let’s examine the facts.” When you say that you may be wrong, people see you as humble and will drop their defensive mindset. Purposefully hurting someone’s ego will only make them feel aggressive towards you.
Sometimes, people just want to feel important. When you admit that you are wrong (whether you are or not) the other person has run out of ammunition to use against you. You have nourished their self-esteem.
“By fighting you never get enough, but by yielding you get more than you expected.”
How to Change People without Giving Offense
“Beginning with praise is like the dentist who begins his work with Novocain. The patient still gets a drilling, but the Novocain is pain-killing.”
Charles Schwab once saw some of his employees smoking underneath the “No Smoking” sign. Instead of lashing out, he said, “I’ll appreciate it boys if you will smoke outside.”
There is great power in calling attention to people’s mistakes indirectly. Another technique is to admit that you yourself needs to change as well as others. You can praise people while subtly suggesting that improvements can be made.
Ask questions instead of screaming out orders is an effective approach because it makes people feel as though they are a part of the solution. Questions like, “Can anyone think of different ways to do this,” show people that you have confidence in them. That way, you won’t damage their ego.
“If you come at me with your fists doubled, I can promise you that mine will double as fast as yours; but if you come to me and say ‘Let us sit down and take counsel together,’ we will find that we are not so far apart after all.”