Harry A. Overstreet stated in his book Influencing Human Behavior that “Action springs out of what we fundamentally desire … and the best piece of advice which can be given to would-be persuaders, whether in business, in the home, in the school, in politics, is: First, arouse in the other person an eager want. He who can do this has the whole world with him. He who cannot walks a lonely way.”
A good example of this comes from Andrew Carnegie, who was a poverty-stricken Scotch lad who started to work at two cents an hour and finally gave away $365 million. He learned early in life that the only way to influence people is to talk in terms of what the other person wants.
To illustrate the point: His sister-in-law was worried sick over her two boys. They were at Yale, and they wee so busy with their own affairs that they neglected to write home and paid no attention whatever to their mother’s frantic letters.
Then Andrew Carnegie offered to wager a hundred dollars that he could get an answer by return mail, without even asking for it. Someone called his bet; so he wrote his nephews a chatty letter, mentioning casually in a postscript that he was sending each one a five-dollar bill.
He neglected, however, to enclose the money.
You can guess what happened next: Back came replies by return mail thanking “Dear Uncle Andrew” for his kind note and inquiring about the missing five-dollar bill.
Remember that the next time you’re trying to get somebody to do something. Here’s an example in action from your friends at Dale Carnegie Training of Edmonton:
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