Feb 062009

how_to_win_friends_and_influence_peopleDale Carnegie’s classic book

How To Win Friends & Influence People has changed tens of thousands of lives. It is one of the most influencial personal development books of all time, and one of the reasons is because it gives sound and practical examples rather than spiritual theories.

We are big fans of this book, and this post basically serves as a recommendation. But rather than write a review or a summary we thought wed include some information on the “key” to wining friends and influencing people..

There are 3 main themese which come up again and again throughout various chapters of this book, and here they are:

1. Never criticize, condemn or complain:

o Self-criticism is extremely rare. Your criticism won’t be welcome.
o Criticism makes others defensive and resentful.

This theme appears over and over, so whenever possible use “positive reinforcement” i.e. instead of complaining about something show someone how they can improve without criticising at all – or if you can’t do that then just leave it – there is no point in ever criticising, it creates resentment and people will defend themselves at all costs

2. Make the other person feel important:
o People yearn to feel important and appreciated.
o Praise others’ strengths and they’ll strive to reinforce your opinion.

This is “the key to the key” – the key to getting someone to like you, or do what you want, or winning to your way of thinking is to make them feel important – highlight their skills and give them HONEST praise for what they do well – this is the need we all strive for but rarely receive – if you can make someone feel important you will be doing something for them which they may not every of expereinced before

3. Frame requests in terms of what others find motivating:

Alwas ask yourself: “Why would someone want to do what I’m asking?” – don’t try and show your point of view, but show them why it will benefit them to do the task – even small benefits are better than none – if you live with this principle you will find people doing much more for you and listening to you much more frequently.

If you can master these three themes you will go very far – but don’t stop there – Get the book and read it all – they say that if you can read and master How to Win Friends and Influence People then you can achieve any goal you set your mind on!