How to win people over?
How to win people over?
In a book called ‘How to win friends and influence people’ Dale Carnegie shares six principles on how to make other people like you, three fundamental techniques on how to handle people and twelve ways on how to win people over. What a piece. The book is based on basic psychology, and gives actual tips and ‘tricks’ on how to live a successful personal and business life with many acquaintances that you can turn into friends. It almost feels as if everyone would read this book, we would be in a situation, where everyone would be successful in their field of business, and most importantly, successful in their personal life.
The first principle on how to make other people like you is, to be interested in others. Sounds simple. As I read through the book, I found that this principle seems very easy, but actually at the same time, it is a very hard one to master. As this principle is based on psychology, and psychology states, that when someone is interested in you, you become interested in them. It’s human nature. Carnegie explains this with numerous real life examples. The message is pretty clear; business life or personal life, the way to gain new friends is to be genuinely interested in others. It’s also a stated fact, that people love talking about themselves, even though some might try to deny it. Carnegie used a good example of a New York telemarketing company which did a study on which word is the most used one in phone conversations, and the result was ‘I’.
If people wouldn’t like to talk about themselves, why does every single B2B meeting start with the salesman asking about the customers day. Nowadays the reasons behind it might be overlooked, and the question might be asked just to make the situation more ‘relaxed’ or just to start a conversation. Which is a shame. But when the question is asked genuinely, and the salesman actually digs a bit deeper in the answers, the customer and the seller form a special bond between them. And as the conversation goes on, the salesman becomes reliable and trustworthy in the eyes of the customer, even though, the salesman might have not said or done anything that indicates trustworthiness. Trustworthiness in this situation is created with the fact, that the salesman is genuinely interested in the customer, and asks about their life etc. Sometimes, the salesman doesn’t even have to ‘sell’ their product, just showcase it, and the customer wants to buy it based on the earlier conversation.
Some could say, that humans are easily fooled. That is almost true.
One could say, that all you need is to pretend to be interested in the other one.
But it doesn’t necessarily go that way.
Although it might seem as a trick to show interest to other people, humans tend to recognize when the counterpart isn’t genuine. The ‘trick’ in mastering this first principle, is to have a REAL interest in others. This way others will have REAL interest in you. Doesn’t matter if we are talking in business settings or in our personal life. Become interesting by being interested.