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How to Win Friends and Influence People - Dale Carnegie

Buch-Review - Hannes Kleist - 14.02.2020

How to Win Friends and Influence People

This classic book was written in 1936. It’s remarkable how current the book seems. People have not changed in nearly 100 years.

Bernard Shaw once remarked: ‘If you teach a man anything, he will never learn.’ Shaw was right. Learning is an active process. We learn by doing.

I found that out the hard way and stopped proposing solutions with the team. Rather, I let them work it out and enjoy the show.

When you are displeased, it is much easier to criticise and condemn than it is to try to understand the other person’s viewpoint.

I find it hard to catch myself when I am in that state of mind :-(

It is frequently easier to find fault than to find praise.

The foundamental attribution error.

  1. Good stuff happens to me: Because I am awesome

  2. Bad stuff happens to me: Somebody/something else is at fault

  3. Good stuff happens to others: Because they got lucky

  4. Bad stuff happens to other people: Because they are lazy/evil/stupid

    You are attempting to form new habits. That will require time and persistence and daily application.

Damn. Why did I just find that out a year ago…

Whenever you are confronted with some specific problem–such as handling a child, winning your spouse to your way of thinking or satisfying an irritated customer–hesitate about doing the natural thing, impulsive thing. This is usually wrong.

That is so true. Our lizard brain with its dopamine and serotonin mechanism is awesome in the cave. But really bad in a civilized society.

Summary: Always distrust your gut.

Offer your spouse, your child or some business associate a dime or a dollar every time he or she catches you violating a certain principle.


After dinner I went off by myself, opened my engagement book and thought over all the interviews, discussions and meetings that had taken place during the week. I asked myself: ‘“ What mistakes did I make that time?”

I started journaling as well. Every morning after meditation I review the last day.


Criticism is futile because it puts a person on the defensive and usually makes him strive to justify himself. Criticism is dangerous, because it wounds a person’s precious pride, hurts his sense of importance and arouses resentment.

Agreed. But don’t you need to tell people when they really fucked up?

Lincoln replied: ‘Don’t criticise them; they are just what we would be under similar circumstances.’

That guy was smart.

That’s art, man!

Sigmund Freud said that everything you and I do springs from two motives: the sex urge and the desire to be great. Deepest urge in human nature is ‘the desire to be important’.

That’s good to remember in conversations. Be genuinely interested and people will like you.



You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.

Try to resist the urge to tell other people something about yourself and you will have wonderful conversations.

The English language was beautiful in the 30ies.

“Good breeding” 😂 I love the 30ies.

‘Every man I meet is my superior in some way. In that, I learn of him.’

Lincoln said that.


Why prove to a man he is wrong? Is that going to make him like you? Why not let him save his face? He didn’t ask for your opinion. He didn’t want it. Why argue with him? Always avoid the acute angle.’

I love it. But it’s so hard when you need other people to course correct hard.

There is only one way under high heaven to get the best of an argument–and that is to avoid it. Avoid it as you would avoid rattlesnakes and earthquakes. Nine times out of ten, an argument ends with each of the contestants more firmly convinced than ever that he is absolutely right.


Buddha said: ‘Hatred is never ended by hatred but by love,’ and a misunderstanding is never ended by an argument but by tact, diplomacy, conciliation and a sympathetic desire to see the other person’s viewpoint.

Damn. The buddha was smart.

‘When two partners always agree, one of them is not necessary.’

Oh. That’s deep.

That is a nice mantra.

You may then hurl at them all the logic of a Plato or an Immanuel Kant, but you will not alter their opinions, for you have hurt their feelings. When we are wrong, we may admit it to ourselves. And if we are handled gently and tactfully, we may admit it to others and even take pride in our frankness and broad-mindedness. But not if someone else is trying to ram the unpalatable fact down our oesophagus. Instead of them, “I conceive,” “I apprehend,” or “I imagine” a thing to be so or so, or “it so appears to me at present.” With a few low-keyed suggestions, at proper intervals, I let them develop my system themselves.

  • PRINCIPLE 2 Show respect for the other person’s opinions. Never say, ‘You’re wrong.’
  • PRINCIPLE 3 If you are wrong, admit it quickly and emphatically.
  • PRINCIPLE 4 Begin in a friendly way.

Where is principle 5?

Principle 11 missing?


Begin with praise and honest appreciation.

  • PRINCIPLE 2 Call attention to people’s mistakes indirectly.
  • PRINCIPLE 3 Talk about your own mistakes before criticising the other person.
  • PRINCIPLE 4 Ask questions instead of giving direct orders.
  • PRINCIPLE 5 Let the other person save face.
  • PRINCIPLE 6 Praise the slightest improvement and praise every improvement. Be ‘hearty in your approbation and lavish in your praise.’
  • PRINCIPLE 7 Give the other person a fine reputation to live up to.
  • PRINCIPLE 8 Use encouragement. Make the fault seem easy to correct.
  • PRINCIPLE 9 Make the other person happy about doing the thing you suggest.

Buy the book on Amazon


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Hannes Kleist
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