Dale Carnegie knew that the secret to developing real friendships was to become genuinely interested in other people.
For example, for years he made it a point to find out the birthdays of his friends. Although he didn’t have the foggiest bit of faith in astrology, he began by asking the other party whether he or she believed the date of one’s birth had anything to do with character and disposition. He then asked the person to tell him the month and day of their birth. After the date was given, Carnegie would keep repeating it to himself until the person’s back was turned, at which point he would write down the name and birthday, and later transfer it to a “birthday book” that he kept.
At the beginning of each year, he would have all the names and birthdays he collected scheduled in his calendar pad so that they came to his attention automatically. (Today we have software programs like “Outlook” to do those sort of tasks!)
When the person’s birthday would arrive, so also would a birthday-greetings letter from Carnegie. And what a hit it made with the lucky birthday guy or gal! Carnegie was often the only person on earth—besides family and close friends—that remembered the birthday.
So if you want other to like you, if you want to develop real friendships, and if you want to help others at the same time as you help yourself, remember to keep this principle in mind: Become genuinely interested in other people!
Here’s an example in action from your friends at Dale Carnegie Training of Michigan:
This post is brought to you by the good folks at Dale Carnegie Training of Michigan, providers of professional development and management development courses and information in Michigan. We would love to connect with you on Facebook and Twitter @micarnegie.
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