Book Summary: How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie

Fundamental Techniques in Handling People

Principle 1: Don’t criticise, condemn or complain

Principle 2: Give honest and sincere appreciation

Principle 3: Arouse in the other person an eager want

Arouse in the other person an eager want. The only way to influence people is to talk in terms of what the other person wants. 

If there is any one secret to success, it lies in the ability to get the other person’s point of view and see things from that person’s angle as well as from your own. 

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Six Ways to Make People Like You

Principle 1: Become genuinely interested in other people

You can make more friends in two months by becoming genuinely interested in other people than you in two years by trying to get other people interested in you. 

Give appreciation and praise instead of condemnation. Stop talking about what you want. Try to see the other person’s viewpoint.

Principle 2: Smile

Force yourself to smile. Action seems to follow feeling, but really action and feeling go together; and by regulating the action, which is under more direct control of the will, we can indirectly regulate the feeling, which is not. 

Principle 3: Remember that a person’s name to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language. 

One of the simplest, most obvious and most important ways of gaining good will was by remembering names and making people feel important.

Exclusive attention to the person who is speaking to you is very important. Nothing else is so flattering as that. 

Principle 4: Be a good listener. Encourage others to talk about themselves. 

Talk about the things you know would interest and please the person. Make yourself agreeable. 

Encourage them to talk about themselves and their accomplishments. Remember the people you are talking to are a hundred times more interested in themselves and their wants and problems than they are in you and your problems. 

Principle 5: Talk in terms of the other person’s interests. 

Little phrases such as “I’m sorry to trouble you,” “Would you be so kind as to _____?” “Won’t you please?” “Would you mind?” “Thank you” 

Principle 6: Make the other person feel important – and do it sincerely.

Always make the other person feel important.  The deepest principle in human nature is the craving to be appreciated. 

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Be a Leader: How to Change People Without Giving Offense or Arousing Resentment

Principle 1: The only way to get the best of an argument is to avoid it

If you argue and rankle and contradict you may achieve victory sometimes; but it will be an empty victory because you will never get your opponent’s good will. 

Nine times out of ten, an argument ends with each of the contestants more firmly convinced than ever that he is absolutely right. 

You can’t win an argument. You can’t because if you lose it, you lose it; and if you win it, you lose it. Why? Suppose you triumph over the other man and shoot this argument full of holes and prove that he is non compos mentis.Then what? You will feel fine. But what about him? You have made him feel inferior. You have hurt his pride. He will resent your triumph. And a man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still. 

Postpone action to give both sides time to think through the problem. 

Look for areas of agreement. 

Be honest. Look for areas where you can admit error and say so. Apologize for your mistakes. It will help to disarm your opponents and reduce defensiveness. 

Promise to think over your opponents’ ideas and study them carefully. Your opponents may be right. It is a lot easier at this stage to agree to think about their points than to move rapidly ahead and find yourself in a position where your opponents can say: “We tried to tell you, but you won’t listen.”

Thank your opponents sincerely. 

How to keep a disagreement from becoming an argument

Welcome the disagreement. When two partners always agree, one of them is not necessary. 

Distrust your first instinctive impression. Our first natural reaction in a disagreeable situation is to be defensive. Be careful. Keep calm  and watch out for your first reaction. It may be at your worst, not your best. 

Control your temper. Remember, you can measure the size of a person by what makes him or her angry. 

Listen first. Give your opponents a chance to talk. 

If a person makes a statement  that you think is wrong – yes, even that you know is wrong – isn’t it better to begin by saying: “Well,  now, look. I thought otherwise, but I may be wrong. I frequently am. And if I am wrong, I want to be put right. Let’s  examine the facts.”

Twelve Ways to Win People to Your Way of Thinking

Principle 1: The only way to get the beat of an argument is to avoid it. 

Principle 2: Show respect for the other person’s opinions. Never say, “you’re wrong.”

You will never get into trouble by admitting that you may be wrong. That will stop all argument and inspire your opponent to be just as fair and open and broad minded as you are. It will make him want to admit that he, too, may be wrong. 

Principle 3: If you are wrong, admit it quickly and emphatically.

If we know we are going to be rebuked anyhow, isn’t it far better to beat the other person to it and do it ourselves? Isn’t it much easier to listen to self-criticism than to bear condemnation from alien lips? 

Say about yourself all the derogatory things you know the other person is thinking or wants to say before that person has a chance to say them. The chances are a hundred to one that a generous, forgiving attitude will be taken and your mistakes will be minimized. 

Principle 4: Begin in a friendly way

Principle 5: Get the other person saying “Yes,yes” immediately

In talking to people, don’t begin by discussing the things on which you differ. Begin by emphasising – and keep on emphasising – the things on which you agree. Keep emphasising, if possible, that you are both striving for the same end and that your only difference is one of method and not of purpose. 

Get the other person saying “yes” at the outset. Keep your opponent from saying “no”. 

Principle 6: Let the other person do a great deal of the talking

Don’t you have much more faith in ideas you discover for yourself than in ideas that are handed to you on a silver platter? If so, isn’t it bad judgement to try to ram your opinions down the throats of other people? Isn’t it wiser to make suggestions – and let the other person think out the conclusion? 

Talk about yourself less and listen more. Only mention about your achievements when people ask. 

No one likes to feel that he or she is being sold something or told to do a thing. We much prefer to feel that we are buying of our own accord or acting on our own ideas. We like to be consulted about our wishes, our wants, our thoughts. 

Stop a minute to contrast your keen interest in your own affairs with your mild concern about anything else. Realise then, that everybody else in the world feels exactly the same way. Success in dealing with people on a sympathetic grasp of the other person’s viewpoint. 

Principle 7: Let the other person feel that the idea is his or hers.

Cooperativeness in conversation is achieved when you consider the other person’s ideas and feelings as important as your own. 

Increase your tendency to think always in terms of the other person’s point of view, and see things from that person’s angle as well as your own. 

Principle 8: Try honestly to see things from the other person’s point of view.

Principle 9: Be sympathetic with the other person’s ideas and desires

Principle 10: Appeal to the nobler motives

Principle 11: Dramatize your ideas

Principle 12: Throw down a challenge

If we want someone to do something, we must give them a challenge and they will often rise to meet it.

Be a leader. Effective ways to correct others’ mistakes 

Principle 1: Begin with praise and honest appreciation

Principle 2: Call attention to people’s mistakes indirectly

No one likes to take orders. Say, “You might consider this.”

Principle 3: Talk about your own mistakes before criticizing the other

Principle 4: Ask questions instead of giving direct orders

“Is there anything we can do to handle this order?”

Principle 5: Let the other person save face

Even if we are right and the other person is definitely wrong, we only destroy ego by causing someone to lose face. I have no right to say or do anything that diminishes a man in his own eyes. What matters is not what I think of him, but what he thinks of himself. Hurting a man in his dignity is a crime. 

Principle 6: Praise the slightest improvement and praise every improvement. Be “hearty in your approbation and lavish in your praise”.

How to spur people on to success

Use praise instead of criticism. Everybody likes to be praised, but when praise is specific, it comes across as sincere – not something the other person may be saying just to make one feel good. 

We all crave appreciation and recognition, and will do almost anything to get it. But nobody wants insincerity. Nobody wants flattery. 

The average person can be led readily if you have his or her respect and if you show that you respect that person for some kind of ability. 

Principle 7: Give the other person a fine reputation to live up to

Principle 8: Use encouragement. Make the fault seem easy to correct.

Be liberal with your encouragement, make things seem easy to do. 

Principle 9: Making people glad to do what you want

Always make the other person happy about doing the thing you suggest. 

Be sincere. Do not promise anything that you cannot deliver. Forget about the benefits to yourself and concentrate on the benefits to the other person. 

Know exactly what it is you want the other person to do. 

Be empathetic. Ask yourself what is the other person really wants. 

Consider the benefits that person will receive from doing what you suggest.

Match those benefits to the other person’s wants. 

When you make your request, put it in a form that will convey to the other person the idea that he personally will benefit. 


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