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This week I was working with a client who needed some help with her relationships at work.  She is a very bright, capable and successful woman but encounters negative feedback from her colleagues because of her sometimes abrasive (and abrupt!) communication style.

Her heightened emotions and sometimes snappy outbursts come from a place of fear.  She wants to be respected, admired and understood (hey – we all do)!  But her behaviour unintentionally a lot of the time generates the opposite reaction from others.  Fear shows up in our lives often as ego and it massively repels people from us.

I gave her the old classic to read by the late Dale Carnegie, How To Win Friends & Influence People.  She read it in 3 days and immediately started applying the principals.  So rapid was her transformation (and so deep my love for this book) that I felt called to share 3 of my favorite tips from in this week’s blog.

  1. How to make people like you instantly

Quote: “You want the approval of those with whom you come into contact.  You want recognition of your true worth.  You want a feeling that you are important in your little world.  You don’t want to listen to cheap, insincere flattery but you do crave sincere appreciation.  You want your friends to be ‘hearty in their approbation and lavish in their praise.’ All of us want that.”

Action: Who can you sincerely appreciate, thank, take time out to praise this week?  Don’t hold back!  Praise is a leader’s tool! Use it as often as you can.  Nothing warms our hearts like genuine appreciation from others.  It never goes out of style and massively endears others to you.

  1. If you’re wrong, admit it

Quote: “If you are wrong, admit it quickly and emphatically.  There is a certain degree of satisfaction and courage to admit one’s errors.  it not only clears the air of guilt and defensiveness, but often helps solve the problem created by the error.  When we are wrong – and that will be surprisingly often – let’s admit our mistakes quickly and with enthusiasm. Not only will that technique produce astonishing results; but believe it or not, it is a lot more fun, under the circumstances, than trying to defend oneself.”

Action: This week, claim all errors or mistakes you make with a sense of humour and absolute ownership.  See how this feels!  It’s freeing and wonderful.  And people trust you as you have nothing to hide.

  1. Give a dog a good name!

Quote: “If you want to excel in the difficult leadership role of changing the attitude and behaviour of others, give the other person a fine reputation to live up to.  The average person can be led readily if you have his or her respect and if you show that you respect that person for some kind of ability.”

Action: Most people are driven to maintain a good reputation than see someone who believes in them disillusioned. When giving feedback, use the approach, “Marie, you are an excellent X.  All of your customers are loyal to you and you consistently receive the most impressive feedback.  It’s been a real surprise to me lately to see your work not up to it’s usual standard.  Can we talk about this and come up with a way together to get back on track?”

These principles are timeless and can apply to almost any relationship in your life.  What do you do to influence others?  Please share with me in the comments box below!




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