How to Win Friends and Influence People Review
Dale Carnegie’s How to Win Friends and Influence People is fundamentally concerned with how best to deal with people. By avoiding criticism and being genuinely interested in what other people have to say, you can come across as a good listener that people want to talk to. This book review will look at the central tenets of How to Win Friends and Influence People, and how practical the lessons are to put into practice.
Be Friendly With Other People, Not Antagonistic
Carnegie uses the phrase “don’t kick over someone’s beehive” to mean that you shouldn’t upset people. And the quickest way to get someone upset is to criticize them. As soon as you start to criticize a person, resentment begins to fester. Since you want to start off interactions on the right foot, find out what they want instead of criticizing them. Carnegie teaches that each person wants to feel important and appreciated, which should guide us on how to talk with people. Carnegie also cautions not to flatter anyone with fake-sounding praise. People like to be genuinely appreciated, and that will take a good eye on your part for picking out a person’s character strengths.
Talk to What People Really Want
Carnegie’s book is one of the best books to read on how to reach people through their deepest desires. Instead of placing your wants at the center of the conversation, make your listener’s wants your priority. This has great applications for salespeople that want to close customers. Carnegie across his various books teaches that that people are more interested in solving their problems then purchasing an item because of abstract qualities that the item has. The way to close the sale is to look at things from the customer’s point of view. If you can align your product or service to solve a person’s problem, then that’s a surefire strategy for getting your customers to close the sale for you.
Six Ways to Make People Like You
The heart of the book is the section on how to get people to like you. Since the main teaching ofHow to Win Friends and Influence Peopleis that you need to be more agreeable, the book wouldn’t be complete without showing you how to develop these skills. The six ways that Carnegie teaches to make people like you are:
Be open and interested in people who cross your path.
You can make more friends by being interested in people than you can by trying to make yourself more interesting to people. Other people have to become a priority for you, and that means you’ll need to practice being unselfish and conscientious.
Approach people with enthusiasm and a smile.
A smile shows to other people that you’re happy to see them. A smile also helps make a favorable first impression much more than a blank or suspicious expression.
Remember people’s names.
Carnegie says that the sweetest sound in the universe to a person is that of their name. If you aren’t good at remembering names, you’ll need to practice mnemonic techniques or some other method to recall them later.
Encourage people to talk about themselves.
People like to talk to active listeners who help them process their thoughts. By being an attentive listener, you’ll also have less inclination to bore people by interjecting yourself into conversations.
Get people talking by sticking with what they’re interested in.
People will always be more enthusiastic about talking about something that interests them, and not necessarily what interests you. If you’re going into a business deal, it helps to do prior research on the participants to help guide the conversation.
Make people feel important.
Look for any aspect in a person that sets them out from the crowd. By harping on these qualities, you can make a person feel special while they’re around you.
How Practical Are These Methods in Real Life?
How to Win Friends and Influence Peoples is a great book, but everyone who reads it will be in a different place in their lives. If you are generally not a social person, it will be hard to put many of his ideas into practice. Likewise, if you have low energy, it’s going to be hard to greet people with an enthusiastic smile. It’s not always easy to learn sociability from books. Everyone will be starting at a different level of sociability, so people should consider where they are socially before trying to implement Carnegie’s teachings. But simple things like placing the other person first and being an attentive listener can pay off in big ways. Even if you only apply a few of Carnegie’s life lessons, you’ll definitely appreciate Carnegie’s works as one of the best books to read on influence.