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How to Win People to Your Way of Thinking (Part 4 of 12)

This is the thirteenth 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: If you’re wrong, admit it quickly and emphatically

How to Win People to Your Way of Thinking

Principle 4: Begin in a friendly way

  • If a man’s heart is rankling with discord and ill-feeling toward you, you can’t win him to your way of thinking with all the logic in Christendom.
  • People can’t be forced or driven to agree with you, but they may be led to agree if you do so ever so gently and are ever so friendly.
  • Example — trying to get rent reduced. Tell the landlord how much you like the apartment and how it’s managed and would love to stay, but you can’t afford it. Lead with something positive rather than demanding what you want.
  • Example — having to take your car in multiple times for repairs. Tell the manager that you purchased the car because of the dealership’s reputation of good prices and excellent service. “I thought you might want to be aware of any situation that might tarnish your fine reputation.”


The Wind and the Sun were disputing which was the stronger. Suddenly they saw a traveler coming down the road, and the Sun said: “I see a way to decide our dispute. Whichever of us can cause that traveler to take off his cloak shall be regarded as the stronger. You begin.” So the Sun retired behind a cloud, and the Wind began to blow as hard as it could upon the traveler. But the harder he blew the more closely did the traveler wrap his cloak round him, till at last the Wind had to give up in despair. Then the Sun came out and shone in all his glory upon the traveler, who soon found it too hot to walk with his cloak on. — Aesop

The friendly approach and appreciation can make people change their minds more readily than all the bluster and storming in the world.

Up Next

Get the other person saying “yes, yes” immediately.


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