While waiting for my wife to shop after presenting in Adelaide, Australia (a lovely city we really enjoyed), I purchased a copy of Dale Carnegie’s “How to Win Friends and Influence People.” Originally published in 1936, the book went on to become one of the best-selling books of all time and making Carnegie an international celebrity and an American icon.
The book was used as the text in my first college speech course, and since it had been years since I first read it, I decided to re-read it. The copy of the classic book I purchased was the 1981 revised edition. Carnegie had a gift for expressing profound truths in simple ways. A perfect example is his “Six Ways to Make People Like You”:
Principle 1. Become genuinely interested in other people.
Principle 2. Smile.
Principle 3. Remember that a person’s name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language.
Principle 4. Be a good listener, and encourage others to talk about themselves.
Principle 5. Talk in terms of the other person’s interests.
Principle 6. Make the other person feel important, and do it sincerely.
Carnegie believed that you can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get people interested in you.