How do some people have a ton of friends and always seem to get along well with other people? It seems like they have a magic charisma that draws people to them. What makes them so likable? If you haven’t already, I highly recommend you buy the book How To Win Friends And Influence People by Dale Carnegie. The book is worth its weight in gold.
This article is a shout out to Dale Carnegie. It highlights his key principles to get people to like you and how you can apply them to improve your life. I’m talking better relationships with your current friends, expanding your social circle, people calling you to hang out, better results in your work environment, promotions at work, better relationships with your customers, and more attention from the opposite sex. This stuff is life changing but only if you apply it. Remember, knowledge is not power - “application” is power.
- 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 people to talk about themselves.
- Talk in terms of the other person's interests.
- Make the other person feel important - and do it sincerely.
***Become genuinely interested in other people.
Everybody craves attention! Get to know the other person. Where are they from, what they do for fun, where have they traveled, what are their goals, what expertise do they have? The possibilities are endless! Be curious about people. Most people love talking about themselves and EVERYBODY loves talking about their accomplishments so dive in!
Every time you smile a neurotransmitter called Serotonin is released. This molecule is responsible for regulating our mood and giving us that warm happy feeling. People enjoy being around people who are in a good mood. Smiling is the universal language of kindness. When was the last time you facetimed or met with someone and were greeted with a smile? How did it make you feel? Chances are it made your day better, so smile often!
Six months into my positivity project I was making keys for a customer who comes in regularly. When I finished making his keys he stopped me and asked in front of his son, “hey you have helped me a few times in here and I’m curious, how you are so happy all the time?” I responded with a quote out the book Attitude Is Everything by Keith Harrell. “Attitude should be an indication of where you desire to go in life, not a reflection of what you’ve been through.” He looked at me, smiled, laughed and said, “that’s a great way to live. It always brightens my day to come in here because you are always in such a great mood, thanks.” Hearing that made MY day. I had been practicing this exact principle to see what effect it would have. This customer’s unsolicited feedback was proof that what I was doing was working! I could influence others to feel better by simply smiling and being in a good mood!
Remember that a person's name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language.
Whenever you meet someone, after they introduce themselves say “’their name’ it’s nice to meet you.” Always say their name when saying goodbye, it shows you remembered and care about the interaction. How did you feel last time someone forgot your name? How did you feel when you were reintroduced to someone you had already met but forgot their name? Remembering someone’s name can be incredibly powerful and set yourself apart so always make a point to remember!
Every time I come across someone who remembers my name I am always impressed. I genuinely feel like they care. If it’s a situation where they remembered my name but I failed the remember theirs I always make an extra effort to remember it next time. These people always stand out to me because so many other people fail to remember names. When someone remembers your name it says you stood out in a unique way and makes you feel special.
(If you struggle to remember names I highly recommend you read this article on remembering names - https://www.forbes.com/sites/work-in-progress/2013/08/21/the-best-five-tricks-to-remember-names/#4b57de25501f )
Be a good listener. ... encourage people to talk about themselves.
How many times have you had a conversation with someone where all they did was talk the entire time? You probably were muttering “take a breath” under your breath or thought “if he/she could only hear themselves talk right now.” How enjoyable was that interaction? Did it make you want to strike up a conversation next time you saw them? Now imagine a time when someone was asking you questions about your passions and interests, how did it make you feel? I bet you’d describe that interaction as “engaged” and thrilling. People love talking about themselves. Let’s face it, we are much more excited to talk about our interests and passions than we are others’. When you encourage people to talk about themselves they are going to enjoy the conversation much more! I once met a man when I was working at a hardware store. He was a customer coming in to shop. I happen to not be busy and in the social mood I always was struck up a conversation with the guy. He worked at a morgue and with families who were putting their loved ones to rest. I asked him engaging questions – How did you get started? What made you want to go into the Morgue business? What do you love most about your job? I empathized with him and imagined what would make him thankful for having such a job. “I bet you are very humbled. If I was in your work, it would serve as a constant reminder how lucky I am and to live life to its fullest every day.” It was like I had hit the nail on the coffin, his eyes lit up and he told me about all the remarkable improvements this work made in his life. He told me how it made him realize all the things he should be thankful for, things he had previously taken for granted. I could tell this was something nobody had touched on with him before. At the end of our conversation, he thanked me for my help and told me how great it was to speak with me.
Talk in terms of the other person's interests
What is the other person trying to accomplish? What are their goals? What are unique ways you can help they have not thought of? As a medical sales professional, it is my job to speak in terms of my client’s interest – helping patients. What does a good and bad example of this look like?
Bad Example: Let’s say I put my interests first. As a sales rep, I want to sell as much product as possible. What would it look like if I approached every sales call with this attitude?
Me: Hey doc I want to show you something that you are going to like.
Doc: What is it?
Me: This allograft tissue is better than the tissue you are currently using. Other docs love this tissue and have stopped using the tissue you are using and made the switch.
Doc: Oh yeah?
Me: yes, I’d love for you to try it. I know it will be a game changer. I could donate 1 or 2 tendons and if you like them I can get with the hospital and have them continue to order it for you.
Doc: Hmm.. I am not sure.. I am pretty happy with what I have been using.
Me: Please doc, I am so close to hitting quota this quarter. Management has been putting pressure on me to sell more because we were down last quarter. This would make me look really good in front of my boss. Will you just give it a try?
***Here all I did was speak in terms of my interests – hitting quota, looking good in front of my boss, selling more. I came across as needy and probably blew any chance I had in the future of doing business with this doctor.
Me: Hey doc, I noticed you had an ACL reconstruction on the board indicating an Allograft. What are your thoughts on the different processing methods companies use to sterilize their tissue?
Doc: I haven’t given it much thought really. Why do you ask?
Me: We have an Aseptic option for our allografts. This Aseptic option hedges risk for patient revisions and allows doctors like yourself to attract patients from other surgeons practices. Because we do not use any irradiation or harsh chemicals on our grafts the proteins in the collagen bundles are not denatured. This gives patients a graft that is as close to the native tendon as possible resulting in a better outcome and performance going forward.
Doc: Interesting, do you have info you can send me?
Me: Absolutely, but what I would love to do is put your hands and eyes on one of our tendons so that you can see and feel the difference. With your signature on this paper right here, I can donate 2 tendons for you to see yourself. After you have had a chance to look and feel them, you can make the decision on what you think is best for your patients.
Doc: Yeah I’d like to see what you have.
Notice how I spoke in terms of his interests – better patient outcomes, hedging risk for revisions, attracting patients from other surgeon’s practices, and letting him decide what is best for his patients. The second example allowed me to score a few points with the doc and showed I had his best interest at heart. The first example ruined any future chance of having a relationship with the guy.
Make the other person feel important - and do it sincerely
Take a moment and think of a time someone made you feel “important.” Maybe it was when you were hired on by that company you had been interviewing with for weeks, maybe it was a promotion at work, maybe it was when your parents finally let you baby sit your siblings or gave you a task they previously didn’t trust you with. How did it make you feel? Chances are this was a powerful feeling. When getting to know someone, point out how they are valuable in their own unique way.
So how can you apply these principles so they become habits? Before I explain I want to put something in perspective. Do you know the difference between courses and books? People read the books to obtain “info” and they cost anywhere between $5 - $30 on average. People take courses for “application” and pay anywhere between $100 - $3,000. Many companies offer courses that cost an extraordinary amount more than the book. Is it because the content is different? NO, most of the time the content in the book is the same content in the course. The difference is by taking a course you are paying hard earned $ to make someone force you to apply the info so you learn it. The best way to learn is by doing and these companies know that if you perform the necessary actions to learn the material you will reap the rewards. This is a totally different outcome than if you read a book 3x. Why do I bring this up? If you have the discipline to take action on these principles and apply them you give yourself a course that others pay thousands of dollars for. So how do we do this?
Purchase a large white board you can draw on with a erasable marker. Put it somewhere you will see every day. I recommend on your refrigerator or a wall in your room. Write down the principle and keep it on the board for one week. Every day you come home write down 1 thing you did to apply that principle and the effect you think it had. It would look something like this.
Principle: Become a good listener and encourage people to talk about themselves.
Action: I asked Sarah about her half marathon she ran this weekend. I asked her about how she felt while running, if she hit a wall, and how she felt when she finished. I genuinely wanted to know everything about her experience.
Result: Her eyes lit up when I asked her about her run. I could tell she was feeling strong emotion when I asked her how it felt when she finished. Based on her tone, I could tell she was engaged and enjoyed telling me about the experience.
Write down at least one new experience every day based on that principle for 1 week. The more experiences you feel out the better. Set a reminder for 12:00pm and 5:00pm to go off every day so you don’t forget to look for ways to apply the principle. At the end of each day fill out your experience. Keep a log of all your experiences and at the end of the week change it to the next one. . If you do not have much of a result for one experience don’t worry about it. This “course” should take you about six weeks to complete. At the end, re-read all your experiences. Collectively, I think you will find the impact of these principles very powerful.
Have you had a unique experience? Please share it below in the comments section!