I just finished reading a classic title from 1936. Everything in this title is relevant to what is occurring in the business world today. The book I finished reading was Dale Carnegie’s: How to Win Friends & Influence People.
You Can’t Beat a Classic
It’s always interesting to read a classic book. There are differences in sentence structure, style and many times there are words that grace the pages of changed and archaic meanings from times gone by. None of these occur to the reader when looking at this particular title. The pages are just as fresh and interesting today as they were for a Depression Era audience in 1936. Carnegie has painstakingly provided us with a roadmap of how to deal with people in any area of corporate America. He does this while preserving the inexorable pull of the individual toward maintaining ego and self. Most of the tenets in this book are about treating others with respect, dignity, and a mature attitude to look at a situation from the other side of the fence.
Listening is Always Best
In essence, many of the things that have been proposed in this book come down to just a fundamental listening to another person. Another angle would be to throw out all preconceived notions of a situation and to begin at a zero-sum balance before engaging in any dialogue. Carnegie himself has recommended that the first three sections of part one in the book could be a basis for any interactions in a corporate environment. The first three sections are titled:
- If You Want to Gather Honey Don’t Kick Over the Beehive
- The Big Secret of Dealing With People
- He Who Can Do This Has the Whole World With Him. He Who Cannot Walks a Lonely Way
Do Unto Others
This is by no means a religious book, but there are many shades of the New Testament in the statements and conjectures that Carnegie brings to life. There are images of doing unto others as you would have done unto yourself. There is the imagery of turning the other cheek when dealing with anger and frustration in any given corporate situation. There is the imagery of walking a mile in another man’s moccasins before giving an answer or making a statement. Also there is the imagery of not casting the first stone and being someone who listens and actually cares about the statements of individuals who bring some problem or issue to corporate attention.
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Take the Pathway
In the world we live in everyone seems to shoot from the lip and ask questions later. Carnegie’s book is completely refreshing in that he is giving us a handbook for success that only deals with personal restraint. If you can master restraining yourself and give the full measure of your complete attention to another human being then you will be in command of all the necessary tools that Carnegie has outlined in this incredible detail of corporate communications and interactions. This book, along with Jeff Olson’s: The Slight Edge, has really opened my eyes to what is necessary and important in dealing with other people in a business environment.
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For everyone who is new to the publishing industry, I recommend that you get a copy of this book from the public library, bookstore, or download it from Amazon and read it and then reread it. Everything you need to know about business interactions and corporate communications that will help you rise to the corner office are included in this groundbreaking, visionary title from Mr. Carnegie. It’s amazing to me that it took until 1936 for a book of this kind to actually be written. It is a testament to the man and author that Dale Carnegie was that 75 + years later we are still reading this book and implementing these important tenets.
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