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Professional Communication Skills (HS 601)

Handout - Dale Carnegie Tips for Success

  1. Show a Real Interest in Others
    1. Let the other person do most of the talking.
    2. Encourage others to talk about themselves.
    3. Be a good listener.
    4. Talk in terms of the other person's interest.
  2. Be a Better Listener
    • Do you need to improve your listening skills? According to experts, "good listeners" display a pattern of distinctive behaviors and these can be easily practiced and mastered.
    1. Stay focused. Minimize external distractions and pay close attention to what others say.
    2. Interpret both words and emotions. The words people use are just one part of what they're saying. You can capture the whole message by also paying attention to the emotions behind the words.
    3. Do not interrupt. Interruptions decrease effective communication.
    4. Resist filtering. Be open-minded; don't judge what someone says by your values only.
    5. Summarize the message. Be sure you've heard something correctly by offering a quick summary of what the other person has said.
  3. Communicate Effectively Within Teams
    • No matter what business you're engaged in, it's likely you are a member of one or more teams, or will be soon. Here are some ideas to help ensure that the players on your team communicate well with each other.
    1. Treat people like individuals.
    2. Make each team member responsible for the team product.
    3. Create a shared sense of purpose.
    4. Make all goals team goals.
    5. Share the glory, accept the blame.
    6. Get involved, stay involved.
    7. Mentor and coach team members.
    8. Take every opportunity to build the team's confidence.
  4. Remember Names: Here's How
    1. Make sure you hear a name clearly and can pronounce it correctly.
    2. Ask the person to repeat his or her name if necessary.
    3. Get a distinct impression of the person - note physical characteristics, listen to the person's voice, try to "visualize" the personality.
    4. Repeat the person's name to yourself several times to get it fixed in your mind.
    5. Use the person's name several times during your conversation.
    6. Associate the name with a word picture that's colorful, action-oriented, even exaggerated.
  5. The Two-Step Time Management Rule
    • Practice this simple rule to see how it will save you time and help you reach your goals:
    1. Plan your day to achieve your goals.
    2. Keep to your plan.
  6. Practice Good Communication
    1. Whether you're speaking to one person or communicating with a large audience, you can deepen the impact of your message by following these simple guidelines:
    2. Be excited about the topic.
    3. Convey ideas enthusiastically.
    4. Animate your presentation with voice and gesture.
    5. Speak directly to the audience.
    6. State your points clearly and concisely.
    7. Keep in mind that anecdotes are essential to strong presentations.
    8. Summarize your main points often.
    9. Get people involved in your presentation.
  7. Express Appreciation: Four Key Points
    • Appreciation: It's one thing we can never get enough of! In fact, one of the most powerful ways to build lasting relationships is to let people know about the strengths you see and admire in them. Be generous in expressing your appreciation. And remember to be specific about the strengths you observe.
    1. Give honest, sincere appreciation.
    2. Don't criticize, condemn, or complain.
    3. Make the individual feel important.
    4. Give the person a fine reputation to live up to.
    • "You have it easily in your power to increase the sum total of this world's happiness now. How? By giving a few words of sincere appreciation to someone who is lonely or discouraged. Perhaps you will forget tomorrow the kind words you say today, but the recipient may cherish them over a lifetime." &emdash; Dale Carnegie.
  8. Networking Ideas That Make a Difference
    • Smart business people understand the value of networking. Put simply, expanding your contacts improves your chances to build good relationships, discover leads, and generate increased sales. Plus, the more people you get to know in your own industry - or in different businesses and functions - the easier it will be for you to find the best sources when you need specialized information or the insights of an experienced professional. Here are some known ways to widen your circle of contacts by improving your networking strategy:
    1. Offer to help others. End meetings and calls by asking, Is there anything I can do to help you?
    2. Communicate your unique knowledge and expertise to others.
    3. Share your own personal contacts judiciously.
    4. Be approachable.
    5. Write personal thank-you notes to people who help you.
    6. Follow through on your commitments - always.
  9. And when you're planning to participate in a networking event, increase your chances for success by applying these easy ideas:
    1. Know who will be attending the event.
    2. Arrive early.
    3. Dress appropriately.
    4. Bring lots of business cards.
    5. Have a personal 30-second "commercial" ready.
    6. Remember people's names and use them in conversation.
    7. Spend most of your time with people you don't know.
    8. Learn about other people before you start talking about yourself.
    9. Have fun.
  10. Problem Solving: The Four Question Approach
    • This deceptively simple formula will amaze you. Try it.
    1. What is the problem?
    2. What are the causes of the problem?
    3. What are the possible solutions?
    4. What is the best possible solution?
    • Once you've discovered the best possible solution, take action!
    • The key is not to be overwhelmed by problems.
  11. Habits for Improving Performance
    1.  Clear your desk of all materials except those relating to the immediate task.
    2. Do things in the order of their importance.
    3. When you face a problem, solve it right away if you have the information needed to make a decision.
    4. Learn to organize, delegate, and supervise.
  12. How to Conquer Worry and Manage Stress
    • "You can conquer almost any fear if you will only make up your mind to do so." This wisdom comes from Dale Carnegie who also devised a simple formula for holding anxiety in check. Give it a try and you'll discover it really works.
    1. Try to compartmentalize worry so that it doesn't carry over from one day to the next.
    2. Ask yourself what is the worst that could happen.
    3. Prepare to accept the worst.
    4. Try to improve on the worst.
    5. Remind yourself of the toll worry can take on your health.
    6. Remember that ninety percent of what you worry about never happens.
    • "If you want to develop courage, do the thing you fear and keep on doing it until you have a record of successful experiences behind you. That is the quickest and surest way ever yet discovered to conquer fear.
    • You can conquer almost any fear if you will only make up your mind to do so. For remember, fear doesn't exist anywhere except in the mind." &emdash; Dale Carnegie
    • "Finish each day and be done with it... You have done what you could; some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; you shall begin it well and serenely." &emdash; Ralph Waldo Emerson.
  13. Strengthening Relationships: A Time-Tested Strategy
    • It has been reported that one of the greatest personal strengths of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis was her ability to make the person she was speaking with feel like the most important person in the world.
    1. Don't criticize, condemn, or complain.
    2. Give honest, sincere appreciation.
    3. Become genuinely interested in other people.
    4. Smile.
    5. Remember that a person's name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language.
    6. Be a good listener. Encourage others to talk about themselves.
    7. Talk in terms of the other person's interests.
    8. Make the other person feel important, and do it sincerely.

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maintained by T.C. Wehner; last revised on 20 June, 2010