|This post was originally published on OPEN Forum.|
It’s hard to be influential without making a lasting impression, hopefully in a positive way.
Dale Carnegie devotes a major part of “How to Win Friends and Influence People in the Digital Age” to discussing exactly how you can impress people.
Here are some highlights:
1. Take interest in others’ interests
We are so busy today that it’s difficult to make the time to get to know other people. Therefore, when you take the time to get to know someone else, they’ll be grateful for that time.
“Even if you are not actively involved in clubs, groups, or local organisations where face-to-face interactions are possible, there is still an abundance of opportunities to learn about others’ passions and concerns,” Carnegie writes.” The bottom line is that you must become genuinely interested in others before you can expect anyone to be interested in you.”
2. Make an effort to smile
Even when different cultures come together, a smile always brings the same joy and happiness to everyone involved. This will make you more pleasurable to work with as well.
“There is a simple reason for this phenomenon: when we smile, we are letting people know we are happy to be with them, happy to meet them, happy to be interacting with them,” Carnegie says. “They in turn feel happier to be dealing with us.”
3. Learn names
Carnegie says that “names are like company logos,” and in today’s digital world, people’s names may be more important than ever (think social media!).
“The hundreds of millions of bloggers, tweeters, and Facebookers surely want their voices heard, but they also want their names known.”
Use their names and they are far more likely to remember you.
4. Listen longer
Really listening to someone means hearing they say, what they don’t say, and what they really mean. To do this, you have to stop interrupting, listen for feelings, repeat what you heard back to the person, acknowledge what the person said, and look for nonverbal clues.
“When you listen well you not only make an instant impression, you also build a solid bridge for lasting connections,” Carnegie writes. “Who can resist being around a person who suspends his thoughts in order to value yours?”
5. Discuss what matters to them
To influence other people, you need to understand what matters to them.
Carnegie says that “once you know what matters to others through a practice of longer listening, you can then truly engage them by putting such manners at the forefront of your interactions. If you’re talking business, this process is about putting the customer back into customer relationship management.”
6. Leave others better than you find them
If you go out of your way for someone else, there will be a good chance that they’ll do the same for you.” The real key to winning friends and influencing people today is having meaningful relationships. The only way to do this is by constantly adding meaning and value.”
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