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Saturday, December 20, 2008

Remembering A Person's Name

Dale Carnegie, is his famous international best seller, How to Win Friends and Influence People has listed down "six ways to make people like you". Lets explore one of them.

Our name is an extremely vital part of our own self image. It identifies who you are. It is your shout out to the world. Our name is a means of identification. We use it when we affix our signature, on any report we turn in, on our tax returns.

Remember that a person's name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language. The average person is more interested in his or her own name than in all the other names on earth put together.

Remembering a name not only creates instant familiarity and connection to the other person, it is also a subtle and effective complement. It implies of the importance of the other person such that time and effort has been taken to remember one's name.

On the other hand, if you have met someone and meet them later and have not taken the trouble to remember his or her name, that person will think you have no interest in him or her.

"Good manners," said Emerson, "are made up of petty sacrifices."

Now that we've established the importance of remembering a person's name, lets look at some techniques that can help us remember names better.

In order to remember a name, you could form mental imagery that sounds like the name. The more ridiculous the image, the easier it is for you to recall.
It is also important to picture that person in the scene. This will help you to associate that person to the ridiculous scene which triggers off your recognition of that person's name.

Later, when you are alone, you should write down the person's name on a piece of paper. This will give you a written impression of the name. You could also say it aloud a couple of times giving you a spoken impression of the person's name.

Remembering names is an important social skill. Mastering this skill can offer a distinct advantage in your business as well as in your personal lives. The secret to remembering names is to make the extra effort to review, relate, repeat and record the names and associations of people for easier recall.

This article is one of the six ways to make people like you as mentioned in Dale Carnegie's book How to Win Friends and Influence People. If you enjoyed this post, do bookmark this post or subscribe to this blog.

If you like this article, you might also enjoy

Fundamental Techniques in Handling People
1. Don't criticize, condemn or complain.
2. Give honest and sincere appreciation.
3. Arouse in the other person an eager want.

Six ways to make people like you

2. Smile.


OXM said...

I'm horrible with names. That probably says a lot about me. I keep saying I should work on that...

Patricia Rockwell said...

One of the main reasons we have trouble with remembering names is that names are arbitrary. We receive our names at birth for reasons that have nothing to do with the traits that we will ultimately possess. Other objects can be easily remembered because they look like what they are (a tree looks like a tree, a cat looks like a cat), but does a George "look like" a George or a Susan "look like" a Susan? I mean, what does a George or Susan look like? It's easy to see why names are hard to remember.

Anonymous said...

I did not realize the power of using someones name when you first meet them until my current job at a call centre.

When I use their name, they automatically give me their attention, its quite fascinating.

Rams said...

Great post on remembering names. A must read for all. But based on the comments received, I just cannot accept Patricia's comment.

Its not that you can remember people only if they resemble a particular object. By the way, what definition or illusion can you give for a person with the name George?? Is there any preconceived image recorded for person named George.

If you had given ears to what the person has said atleast once, then you can easily remember his identity.




Interpersonal Communication Skills said...

Totally agree on the importance of remembering names. Especially if you're in any line that involves interaction with people. Being able to remember their names makes them feel valued and important, and increases their rapport with you.