A couple of years ago, I was having trouble getting a few of my teammates on board with my ideas of how things should work. I was at my wit’s end when a colleague of mine casually asked if I had read a book called “How to win friends and influence people”. She raved about how the book helped when she was in similar shoes and encouraged me to get a copy and read.
At first, I wasn’t too sure, how was a book going to solve my problem but I took her advice and bought the book and got hooked on it after a few pages.
I saw everything I had been doing wrong. From the way, I addressed my team to the way I was handling issues; I was flawed. I decided to change my tactics, and do things differently using the principles mentioned in the book as guides.
Many years ago, Dale Carnegie wrote this great book on human communications. He laid out principles to guide us on how we should interact with one another in other to leave positive insights and influence the right way. Although these principles are from a long time ago, they still run true today.
As someone who aspires to inspire everyone who comes across me, I keep the principles mentioned in Carnegie’s book very close to my heart. Time and time again when it seems as if I’m going astray and falling back into familiar patterns, I find myself reaching out to these principles to pull back on course.
Read the book if you haven’t, it’s a mind changer, but just in case you find reading the whole book a bit tedious, I have written a summary below in my own words.
SUMMARY OF THE BOOK HOW TO WIN FRIENDS AND INFLUENCE PEOPLE
Principle 1 – Don’t criticise, condemn or complain
It is so easy to see the faults in others rather than our own but we should all remember that no one is above mistakes. Rather than being quick to give out criticism, trying understanding the other person’s needs and tailor your reaction accordingly. Uplift with your words instead of demeaning.
Principle 2 – Give honest and sincere appreciation
People can see half-assed compliments from miles away, so if you are planning on living by this rule, you should be genuine with your appreciation. Say thank you when the need arises and be super truthful about it.
Principle 3 – Be genuinely interested in other people
Be a good listen and encourage others to talk about themselves. It’s so easy to toot our horns but allowing the other person to share their interest with you is so much more rewarding. Be pleasant and try as much as possible to remember the names of people you come across.
Principle 4 – Show respect for the other person’s opinions.
In a world where everyone aspires to be a master, we are so quick to put down the ideas of others and push ours forward instead. Carnegie says we should be empathetic with other people’s ideas and opinions and we should try to understand and see things from their points of view.
Principle 5 – Be quick to apologise if you are wrong
The above principle says it all, if you find out that you are wrong, admit it quickly and apologise accordingly.
This is my summary of the principles laid out in the book. The big takeaway?
“Always leave people a little better and you might be surprised how big it makes you and how far it takes you.”Dale Carnegie – How to win friends and Influence people
There is so much more in the book than I have put down here so I urge to get a copy and read it, I promise you it’s a game-changer.
Till next time,