How to convince anyone to do what you want

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It is apparent that people do not like to be told what to do. As humans, we resent taking orders from people. That is why convincing people to do things can be difficult and frustrating.

In How to win friends and influence people, Dale Carnegie offers valuable advice for convincing people. The advice is simple:

Make the other person feel like the idea is his or hers. 

The story below from How to win friends & influence people highlights this strategy being used by Mr.Wesson.

Eugene Wesson lost countless thousands of dollars in commissions before he learned this truth. Mr. Wesson sells sketches for a studio that creates designs for stylists and textile manufacturers. Mr. Wesson had called once a week, every week for three years, on one of the leading stylists in New York. “He never refused to see me,” said Mr. Wesson, “but he never bought. He always looked over my sketches very carefully and then said: ‘No, Wesson, I guess we don’t get together today.’”

After a hundred and fifty failures. Wesson realized he must be in a mental rut; so he committed to devoting one evening a week to study human behavior.

After doing so, he deiced to try a new approach. Picking up half a dozen unfinished sketches the artists were working on, he rushed over to his buyer’s office. “I want you to do me a little favor if you will,” he said. “Here are some uncompleted sketches Won’t you please tell me how we could finish them up in such a way that they would be of service to you?”

The buyer looked at the sketches for a while without saying a word and then said: “Leave these with me for a few days, Wesson, and then come back and see me.”

Wesson returned three days later, got his suggestions, took the sketches back to the studio and had them finished according to the buyer’s ideas. The result? All accepted.

That was nine months ago. Since that time, the buyer has ordered tons of other sketches, all drawn according to his ideas—and the net result has been more than sixteen hundred dollars in commissions for Wesson. “I now realize why I failed for years to sell,” said Wesson. “I had urged him to buy what I thought he ought to have. I do the very opposite now. I urge him to give me his ideas. He feels now that he is creating the designs. And he is. I don’t have to sell him now. He buys.”

Book: How to win friends & influence people (Purchase on Amazon)

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