Interesting book that many should read at least once. If most of us would apply just one third of principles from this book, amount of assholes in this world would be insanely smaller.
“At any rate, I think you will enjoy reading this true story told by James L. Thomas, a former student of mine…” To me it looks like many stories here might be invented for this book, and not true stories…many look like fairy-tales.
Below are quotations from this book that explain in more detail basic rules.
It is divided in four sections:
- Fundamental Techniques in Handling People
- Ways to Make People Like You
- How to Win People to Your Way of Thinking
- How to Change People Without Giving Offense
From all rules I would say the most important are:
- Become genuinely interested in other people
- Remember person’s name
- Show respect for the other person’s opinions
- Try honestly to see things from the other person’s point of view
- Praise every improvement
For years I have kept an engagement book showing all the appointments I had during the day. My family never made any plans for me on Saturday night, for the family knew that I devoted a part of each Saturday evening to the illuminating process of self-examination and review and appraisal. After dinner I went off by myself, opened my engagement book, and thought over all the interviews, discussions and meetings that had taken place during the week. I asked myself:
‘What mistakes did I make that time?’
‘What did I do that was right—and in what way could I have improved my performance?’
‘What lessons can I learn from that experience?’
“I often found that this weekly review made me very unhappy. I was frequently astonished at my own blunders. Of course, as the years passed, these blunders became less frequent. Sometimes I was inclined to pat myself on the back a little after one of these sessions. This system of self-analysis, self-education, continued year after year, did more for me than any other one thing I have ever attempted.
“It helped me improve my ability to make decisions—and it aided me enormously in all my contacts with people. I cannot recommend it too highly.”
Why not use a similar system to check up on your application of the principles discussed in this book? If you do, two things will result.
First, you will find yourself engaged in an educational process that is both intriguing and priceless.
Second, you will find that your ability to meet and deal with people will grow enormously.
FUNDAMENTAL TECHNIQUES IN HANDLING PEOPLE
PRINCIPLE 1 – Don’t criticize, condemn or complain.
Sharp criticisms and rebukes almost invariably end in futility.
Instead of condemning people, let’s try to understand them. Let’s try to figure out why they do what they do. That’s a lot more profitable and intriguing than criticism; and it breeds sympathy, tolerance and kindness. “To know all is to forgive all.”
PRINCIPLE 2 – Give honest and sincere appreciation.
As Dr. Johnson said: “God Himself, sir, does not propose to judge man until the end of his days.”
PRINCIPLE 3 – Arouse in the other person an eager want.
There is only one way under high heaven to get anybody to do anything. Did you ever stop to think of that? Yes, just one way. And that is by making the other person want to do it.
Of course, you can make someone want to give you their watch by sticking a revolver in their ribs. YOU can make your employees give you cooperation—until your back is turned—by threatening to fire them. You can make a child do what you want it to do by a whip or a threat. But these crude methods have sharply undesirable repercussions.
SIX WAYS TO MAKE PEOPLE LIKE YOU
PRINCIPLE 1 – Become genuinely interested in other people.
“There is nothing else that so kills the ambitions of a person as criticisms from superiors. I never criticize anyone. I believe in giving a person incentive to work. So I am anxious to praise but loath to find fault. If I like anything, I am hearty in my approbation and lavish in my praise. ”
The difference between appreciation and flattery? That is simple. One is sincere and the other insincere. One comes from the heart out; the other from the teeth out. One is unselfish; the other selfish. One is universally admired; the other universally condemned.
When we are not engaged in thinking about some definite problem, we usually spend about 95 percent of our time thinking about ourselves. Now, if we stop thinking about ourselves for a while and begin to think of the other person’s good points, we won’t have to resort to flattery so cheap and false that it can be spotted almost before it is out of the mouth.
You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.
People are not interested in you. They are not interested in me. They are interested in themselves – morning, noon and after dinner.
PRINCIPLE 2 – Smile.
Actions speak louder than words, and a smile says, “I like you, you make me happy. I am glad to see you.” That is why dogs make such a hit. They are so glad to see us that they almost jump out of their skins. So, naturally, we are glad to see them.
You don’t feel like smiling? Then what? Two things. First, force yourself to smile. If you are alone, force yourself to whistle or hum a tune or sing. Act as if you were already happy, and that will tend to make you happy.
Whenever you go out-of-doors, draw the chin in, carry the crown of the head high, and fill the lungs to the utmost; drink in the sunshine; greet your friends with a smile, and put soul into every handclasp. Do not fear being misunderstood and do not waste a minute thinking about your enemies. Try to fix firmly in your mind what you would like to do; and then, without veering off direction, you will move straight to the goal. Keep your mind on the great and splendid things you would like to do, and then, as the days go gliding away, you will find yourself unconsciously seizing upon the opportunities that are required for the fulfillment of your desire, just as the coral insect takes from the running tide the element it needs. Picture in your mind the able, earnest, useful person you desire to be, and the thought you hold is hourly transforming you into that particular individual. . . . Thought is supreme. Preserve a right mental attitude – the attitude of courage, frankness, and good cheer. To think rightly is to create. All things come through desire and every sincere prayer is answered. We become like that on which our hearts are fixed. Carry your chin in and the crown of your head high. We are gods in the chrysalis. – Essayist and publisher Elbert Hubbard
PRINCIPLE 3 – Remember that a person’s name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language.
The average person is more interested in his or her own name than in all the other names on earth put together. Remember that name and call it easily, and you have paid a subtle and very effective compliment. But forget it or misspell it – and you have placed yourself at a sharp disadvantage.
Most people don’t remember names, for the simple reason that they don’t take the time and energy necessary to concentrate and repeat and fix names indelibly in their minds. They make excuses for themselves; they are too busy.
We should be aware of the magic contained in a name and realize that this single item is wholly and completely owned by the person with whom we are dealing and nobody else. The name sets the individual apart; it makes him or her unique among all others. The information we are imparting or the request we are making takes on a special importance when we approach the situation with the name of the individual. From the waitress to the senior executive, the name will work magic as we deal with others.
PRINCIPLE 4 – Be a good listener. Encourage others to talk about themselves.
If you want to know how to make people shun you and laugh at you behind your back and even despise you, here is the recipe: Never listen to anyone for long. Talk incessantly about yourself. If you have an idea while the other person is talking, don’t wait for him or her to finish: bust right in and interrupt in the middle of a sentence.
So if you aspire to be a good conversationalist, be an attentive listener. To be interesting, be interested. Ask questions that other persons will enjoy answering. Encourage them to talk about themselves and their accomplishments.
PRINCIPLE 5 – Talk in terms of the other person’s interests.
Remember that 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. A person’s toothache means more to that person than a famine in China which kills a million people. A boil on one’s neck interests one more than forty earthquakes in Africa. Think of that the next time you start a conversation.
PRINCIPLE 6 – Make the other person feel important-and do it sincerely.
Always make the other person feel important.
The unvarnished truth is that almost all the people you meet feel themselves superior to you in some way, and a sure way to their hearts is to let them realize in some subtle way that you recognize their importance, and recognize it sincerely.
Talk to people about themselves and they will listen for hours.
WIN PEOPLE TO YOUR WAY OF THINKING
PRINCIPLE 1 – The only way to get the best of an argument is to avoid it.
I have concluded that there is only one way under high heaven to get the best of an argument – and that is to avoid it.
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? Well, suppose you triumph over the other man and shoot his 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.
If you argue and rankle and contradict, you may achieve a victory sometimes; but it will be an empty victory because you will never get your opponent’s good will.
So figure it out for yourself. Which would you rather have, an academic, theatrical victory or a person’s good will? You can seldom have both.
PRINCIPLE 2 – Show respect for the other person’s opinions. Never say, “You’re wrong.”
Buddha said: “Hatred is never ended by hatred but by love,” and a misunderstanding is never ended by an argument but by tact, diplomacy, conciliation and a sympathetic desire to see the other person’s viewpoint.
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 you 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.
Look for areas of agreement. When you have heard your opponents out, dwell first on the points and areas on which you agree.
PRINCIPLE 3 – If you are wrong, admit it quickly and emphatically.
Be honest, look for areas where you can admit error and say so. Apologize for your mistakes. It will help disarm your opponents and reduce defensiveness.
Promise to think over your opponents’ ideas and study them carefully. And mean it. 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 wouldn’t listen.”
Thank your opponents sincerely for their interest. Anyone who takes the time to disagree with you is interested in the same things you are. Think of them as people who really want to help you, and you may turn your opponents into friends.
PRINCIPLE 4 – Begin in a friendly way.
Never begin by announcing “I am going to prove so-and-so to you.” That’s bad. That’s tantamount to saying: “I’m smarter than you are, I’m going to tell you a thing or two and make you change your mind.”
That is a challenge. It arouses opposition and makes the listener want to battle with you before you even start.
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.”
We sometimes find ourselves changing our minds without any resistance or heavy emotion, but if we are told we are wrong, we resent the imputation and harden our hearts. We are incredibly heedless in the formation of our beliefs, but find ourselves filled with an illicit passion for them when anyone proposes to rob us of their companionship. It is obviously not the ideas themselves that are dear to us, but our self-esteem which is threatened.
It’s not that I lost will to take notes and extract wisdom, but the book is becoming thinner in wisdom.
PRINCIPLE 5 – Get the other person saying “yes, yes” immediately.
In talking with people, don’t begin by discussing the things on which you differ. Begin by emphasizing—and keep on emphasizing—the things on which you agree. Keep emphasizing, if possible, that you are both striving for the same end and that your only difference is one of method and not of purpose.
PRINCIPLE 6 – Let the other person do a great deal of the talking.
Must people trying to win others to their way of thinking do too much talking themselves. Let the other people talk themselves out. They know more about their business and problems than you do. So ask them questions. Let them tell you a few things.
If you disagree with them, you may be tempted to interrupt. But don’t. It is dangerous. They won’t pay attention to you while they still have a lot of ideas of their own crying for expression. So, listen patiently and with an open mind. Be sincere about it. Encourage them to express their ideas fully.
PRINCIPLE 7 – Let the other person feel that the idea is his or hers.
Don’t you have much more faith in ideas that you discover for yourself than in ideas that are handed to you on a silver platter? If so, isn’t it bad judgment 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?
PRINCIPLE 8 – Try honestly to see things from the other person’s point of view.
Remember that other people may be totally wrong. But they don’t think so. Don’t condemn them. Any fool can do that. Try to understand them. Only wise, tolerant, exceptional people even try to do that.
Seeing things through another person’s eyes may ease tensions when personal problems become overwhelming.
Before asking anyone to put out a fire or buy your product or contribute to your favorite charity, why not pause and close your eyes and try to think the whole thing through from another person’s point of view? Ask yourself: “Why should he or she want to do it?” True, this will take time, but it will avoid making enemies and will get better results – and with less friction and less shoe leather.
PRINCIPLE 9 – Be sympathetic with the other person’s ideas and desires.
Wouldn’t you like to have a magic phrase that would stop arguments, eliminate ill feeling, create good will, and make the other person listen attentively?
Yes? All right. Here it is: “I don’t blame you one iota for feeling as you do. If I were you I would undoubtedly feel just as you do.”
PRINCIPLE 10 – Appeal to the nobler motives.
Jesse robbed trains and held up banks and then gave money to the neighboring farmers to pay off their mortgages.
Jesse James probably regarded himself as an idealist at heart, just as Dutch Schultz, “Two Gun” Crowley, Al Capone and many other organized crime “godfathers” did generations later. The fact is that all people you meet have a high regard for themselves and like to be fine and unselfish in their own estimation.
People are honest and want to discharge their obligations. The exceptions to that rule are comparatively few, and I am convinced that the individuals who are inclined to chisel will in most cases react favorably if you make them feel that you consider them honest, upright and fair.
PRINCIPLE 11 – Dramatize your ideas.
This is the day of dramatization. Merely stating a truth isn’t enough. The truth has to be made vivid, interesting, dramatic. You have to use showmanship. The movies do it. Television does it. And you will have to do it if you want attention.
PRINCIPLE 12 – Throw down a challenge.
“The way to get things done,” say Schwab, “is to stimulate competition. I do not mean in a sordid, money-getting way, but in the desire to excel.”
That is what every successful person loves: the game. The chance for self-expression. The chance to prove his or her worth, to excel, to win. That is what makes footraces and hog-calling and pie-eating contests. The desire to excel. The desire for a feeling of importance
BE A LEADER
PRINCIPLE 1 – Begin with praise and honest appreciation.
Beginning with praise is like the dentist who begins his work with Novocain. The patient still gets a drilling, but the Novocain is painkilling.
PRINCIPLE 2 – Call attention to people’s mistakes indirectly.
Calling attention to one’s mistakes indirectly works wonders with sensitive people who may resent bitterly any direct criticism.
PRINCIPLE 3 – Talk about your own mistakes before criticizing the other person.
Admitting one’s own mistakes—even when one hasn’t corrected them—can help convince somebody to change his behaviour.
PRINCIPLE 4 – Ask questions instead of giving direct orders.
Resentment caused by a brash order may last a long time – even if the order was given to correct an obviously bad situation.
PRINCIPLE 5 – Let the other person save face.
In his book I Ain’t Much, Baby-But I’m All I Got, the psychologist Jess Lair comments: “Praise is like sunlight to the warm human spirit we cannot flower and grow without it. And yet, while most of us are only too ready to apply to others the cold wind of criticism, we are somehow reluctant to give our fellow the warm sunshine of praise.”
PRINCIPLE 6 – Praise the slightest improvement and praise every improvement. Be “hearty in your approbation and lavish in your praise.”
Tell your child, your spouse, or your employee that he or she is stupid or dumb at a certain thing, has no gift for it, and is doing it all wrong, and you have destroyed almost every incentive to try to improve. But use the opposite technique—be liberal with your encouragement, make the thing seem easy to do, let the other person know that you have faith in his ability to do it, that he has an undeveloped flair for it—and he will practice until the dawn comes in the window in order to excel.
PRINCIPLE 7 – Give the other person a fine reputation to live up to.
PRINCIPLE 8 – Use encouragement. Make the fault seem easy to correct.
PRINCIPLE 9 – Make the other person happy about doing the thing you suggest.
The effective leader should keep the following guidelines in mind when it is necessary to change attitudes or behaviour:
- 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 it 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.
It is naïve to believe you will always get a favorable reaction from other persons when you use these approaches, but the experience of most people shows that you are more likely to change attitudes this way than by not using these principles – and if you increase your successes by even a mere 10 percent, you have become 10 percent more effective as a leader than you were before – and that is your benefit.