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Be a Leader (Part 3 of 9)

This is the twenty-fourth post in a multi-part series where I share the highlights of the sections/subsections of the book How to Win Friends & Influence People by Dale Carnegie.

Previous: Call attention to people’s mistakes indirectly

Be a Leader: How to Change People without Giving Offense or Arousing Resentment

Principle 3: Talk about your own mistakes before criticizing the other person

  • “You’ve made a mistake, but Lord knows it’s no worse than any I have made. Judgment comes with experience. Don’t you think it would have been wise to have done XYZ?”


  • Example: typist making spelling errors; “This word doesn’t look right — it’s one of the words I always have trouble with. That’s the reason I started this little spelling book of mine. I’m very conscious of my spelling now because people do judge us by our letters, and misspelling make us look less professional.”
  • Example: son starting smoking; “I started smoking when I was your age, and now nicotine has gotten the best of me. It’s nearly impossible for me to stop, and my cough is irritating.”

Up Next

Ask questions instead of giving direct orders.



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