How to Win Friends and Influence People
What Can Investors and Startups Learn From Dale Carnegie's Popular Book?
Why is Dale Carnegie's Book Worth Reading for Startups and Investors?
A book that was originally published back in 1936 and is absolutely a generational favorite is called How To Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie. It is a phenomenal book that any investor needs to be aware of. It's a book that helps you understand the sides of winning friends and getting business not just from your friends, but being a likable person who can actually influence others. Dale Carnegie has long since passed but created a series of seminars that are still conducted today throughout the country where you can connect with business leaders. This book is the, kind of Bible so to speak of the Carnegie movement.
What are the main points of How to Win Friends and Influence People? Number one is never to criticize, condemn or complain. If you're trying to win friends, that's the worst way to make a friend, is to constantly criticize, condemn and complain and bring a level of negativity. It's not to say you shouldn't be honest with them, which is the second point is to give sincere appreciation. You have to stay positive as much as positive. Being around somebody who's negative can be kind of be a downer and we don't want Debbie Downer's in the old Saturday Night Live skit. We want people that empower us and provide a sense of well being in their company. Second is to give that honest and sincere appreciate. Show people that you appreciate them and they'll want to do more things for you, in terms of how to win friends.
Third thing is arouse an interest form another person. In other words when you're talking to somebody, if you're trying to build a relationship, whether it's a girl, boy or if it's romantic or not, male, female does not matter. You've really got to find out interests and get them interested in whatever you're talking about. Part of the way to do that is to ask whether they like certain things and whether they're interested in certain topics that are related to you.
The fourth thing is to show genuine interest. This is something you can never make up. You can't train for showing genuine authentic interest in people. However, what you can do is before your next meeting with a friend, think about something that's happened in their lives that impacted them and ask about their family; ask about where they're from. One of the best ice-breakers you can ask to show genuine interest is where are you from. That is a nice ice-breaker if you want to get started talking to somebody and it makes them somewhat nostalgic and gives them a sense that you really care about them. Although you can't train somebody to show genuine interest, if that's not necessarily who you are, you can at least think about better ways to connect to show a level of genuine interest in people
What are the main points of "How To Win Friends and Influence People"?
The fifth thing is to smile and I put a little smiley face there for you. Smiling is contagious. Just like not being around negative people can bring you down, when you smile, the opposite of that is when you smile, it's just like yawning, it always seems contagious. It brings that effect out in people. I personally, I'm a big smiler, I'm a lover of life and I believe in people so smiling is important. I've seen it first hand through the companies we've invested in at Angel Kings, smiling makes a difference and builds a level of trust.
The last two things in terms of how to win friends are to say someone's name as if it matters. So my name is Ross and when I hear somebody say my name, and the more often they say it, the more I feel connected to them. The more I feel like they know me. It seems arbitrary but it's true. If you're trying to win friends over by saying the person's first name, you create an equal level playing field between you and them. You become a colleague instead of just somebody who's a subordinate, either above or below them. When you say their first name, it resonates with the person the more times you say it. You can say their names many times as possible and still be authentic.
Make the Person Feel Important.
Number seven on the list of how to win friends is to make the other person feel important. If you meet a potential friend, or a potentially long term friend or just somebody you want to hang out with, it's important that you make them feel important by citing specific examples of how they've impressed you or how they've impacted you. That's what one of the big influences of the book How To Win Friends and Influence People. I was influenced by that idea that you've got to make people feel important if you want them to want to hang around. Those are the big points on how to win friends.
How does Dale Carnegie's book show investors and startups how to be a leader?
You can have a friend but also be a leader and be a trailblazer for them, but this is more in terms of a business context. How to be a a leader and influence people? First thing is you need to begin with praise and honest appreciation. Begin with praise. Compliment people. Compliment, compliment, compliment. Don't over-do it. I'd say within the first ten minutes if you've met somebody you want to do business with for the first time, you should compliment them in terms of any past achievements they've had that brought you two together. Compliment them and show a level of praise and appreciation for them meeting with you.
The second thing is to call attention to people's mistakes directly. This is in the context of running a business. I've run businesses before and I can tell you, instead of calling people out and making them feel less appreciated, you should call them out and be very clear. Tell people what they need to hear, not what they want to hear. If for example there is somebody in your workplace who you're upset with because they're not doing their job and you're the boss, ask to meet with them separately, maybe for coffee. Ask them what's going on in their life that might be impacted and get to know them and then bring up to some extent what the mistake might have been and how they might better avoid mistakes like that in the future.
Third thing is to talk about your own mistakes. People in business especially want to know that you've made mistakes and can identify with them. Especially if you're about to criticize somebody and say they've made a mistake, you can preface it by saying look, awhile back I did the following and it didn't work out and so I've learned from that and I want to show you too, in the future when you do this, don't make the same mistake that I did. That's a good script to have when you're talking to somebody to identify mistakes and tell your mistakes first before your criticize others
Ask questions instead of giving orders.
The fourth thing is ask questions instead of giving orders. If you want something done, 99.9% of people don't like to be barked out, don't like to be told specifically, if they are a normal human being that they have to do this. You don't want to create a draconian workplace where you're barking orders, your dictatorial method. You want to ask questions. Make people feel as if they're answering them and by answering them they're also feeling empowered and part of the process of improving. Ask questions instead of giving orders and barking orders.
The fifth thing is praise every slight improvement. If you got a project and there's several things that one person that might be underneath you, or might in terms of structure is underneath you and you're their boss and you're seeing changes from your original meetings, you need to identify those changes as positive improvements and let them know. People love to be appreciated.
Overall Dale Carnegie's How To Win Friends and Influence People is a must read. I give four and a half out of five stars. Frankly it's a great book for anybody who's into startups, investing or if you're in business and you want to improve yourself, your personal skills, your professional skills. If you want to learn more check out our website where you can invest in top companies because we believe in them.