The book launch of “Transforming a University: The scholarship of Teaching and Learning in Practice” is going to be launched at the ISSOTL conference next week. I was fortunate enough to be a co-author for one of the chapters, and I am quite excited to see it go to press.
I recently read How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie as part of the book reading group at work. It was the first self-help book I’ve read… ever. I found it to be an interesting book full of anecdotal stories that exemplilfy the core principles of the book. Some people may find the theme of the stories a bit repetitive, as they always end with the author averting conflict and having a free meal at the expense of his new found friend. Ok, so maybe that was a huge generalisation, but it just seems that way. The repetition does however reinforce the lessons on how to win friends and influence people.
I’ve tried to put into practice many of the lessons that I’ve read in the book, and have been surprised by how effective they are. Simple things like remembering a person’s name certainly does wonders. “Remember that a man’s name is to him the sweetest and most important sound in any language”. Add to that a smile and a general interest in the other person, and you are a few steps closer to making that person like you. It is a lot easier to do business with someone that regards you as a friend, than with someone that doesn’t trust you. These are just some reminders of simple manners that are often forgotten when dealing with people.
The fundamental techniques that the book prescribes in handling people are:
- Don’t criticise, condemn or complain
- Give people a feeling of importance, praise the good parts of them
- Get the other person to want to do what you want them to by arousing their desires
As a consultant, these techniques are extremely important to me, as they form the basis of extracting the most out of the team of people that I work with, and with my interactions with the client.
I would highly recommend this book for any professional that finds themselves engaging with people on a daily basis, or for those that just want to be a better person.