Being a people-person is a life long mastery that gets better as we interact with people.
You get better when you get more interested in others.
How do you get more interested in others?
I have outlined some ways you can create effective relationships that lasts.
1. Always Smile
I once entered into a restaurant and the waiter attending to me with the menu was really frowning.
Probably she wasn’t aware of it. I quickly remembered that I was in control of my internal states.
So I asked her a question with a smile politely, “Do you know that your dress looks good on you?”
She gazed at me as if her attention has been caught. Then I continued“You have been frowning since I came here and if you won’t smile, I won’t order for any meal here”.
She later gave a sheepish smile.
What’s the point? The first thing a person sees meeting you is your facial expression and if it’s not filled with smile,it may make you lose people influence.
What is in a smile? A smile makes a dark day seems bright.
It’s like a ray of light in a dark tunnel. A smile increases your face value.
A smile means: you are welcome, I am approachable, I am happy to see you, I am easy-going, I am friendly, I care about you.
Innocent as babies are, have you tried smiling to a baby before?
What was their response? Did you see how they mirror your mood?
Did you see how they become cheerful, free and more active.
I can boldly say a nursery teacher who can’t just smile has no business caring for or teaching nursery children.
Even if you have a moody face or you are a serious-looking person or don’t always feel like smiling, you can learn the art of smiling.
How? Simple. Every morning when you wake up, look into a mirror. Smile.
Show some teeth and smile again. Awkward right? Don’t worry, keep smiling till you become at ease with your self and your smile.
It may seem difficult at first but when it becomes a habit, it becomes so natural for you.
If you really want to be a people-person, you have to practice the art of smiling. McConnell, a psychologist at the University of Michigan, expressed his feelings about a smile.
“people who smile, he said, “tend to manage, teach and sell more effectively and raise happier children”
You see, even if you had a bad mood or day, don’t let that dampen your smile.
I realised many years ago that my mood mirrors the reaction I get when I meet people.
So, no matter how my feelings were injured, I would force a smile. Do you know that your mood is infectious?
That’s what your smile and frown do. They infect. Wouldn’t you be lot happier when you meet people and their life seems brighter?
If you want to really make people to like you, smile. Smile till it’s contacted. You will have those desired relationships.
2. Understand that the average human being is selfish
Have you tried catching a fish before in a little pond with a hook?
What did you use? A bait right. Yes!
That’s the same way it applies to humans.
How do we become someone people go after? How can we be a people-person?
This is it. ‘Give people what they want’. What do people want?
What people want is left for you to figure out. People will not do what you want if they are not benefiting from it.
They usually ask “what is in it for me?” If you want to be a people-person, think of the other person’s wants, needs or desires.
What they need could be a feeling, a satisfaction, a benefit an advantage.
And when you find what they want, feed their ‘selfish desires’.
Once you do that, you get more control, more power, more influence. You become someone they look up to.
If you are a leader or would-be leader, before you tell people to do what you want, tell them the benefits they will derive if they do it.
If it meets their desires, you will get better responses.
Do you remember the Marshmallow experiment about children who were kept in a room with marshmallows and told that if they delayed gratification for some hours by not taking the marshmallows , they will get extra?
That’s how to get people cooperate with you. If there is a benefits, entitlement, gain, good feeling, they will do it.
3. Appreciate People.
One of the dosage to a person’s self-worth is appreciation.
Though it’s good if one is not swept off by the praises of men.
But in every sense of the word, every human being wants to feel like they matter and appreciation is a booster.
Even the most meekest of men desires to be appreciated.
They want to be appreciated for making little or significant efforts.
If you want to be a people-person, you must learn to show gratitude to people even for the most trivial and little things done.
A manager who wants to get the best from his workers must constantly appreciate them for every improvements made.
It spurs people to do more. What I mean is showing gratitude not flattery. You see, flattery is manipulative and deceitful.
You may say there are some people who haven’t done anything to be grateful for.
Now the reason you don’t see anything yet is because you expect so much from people.
One of the best way of getting along with others is to limit your expectations from them and show them gratitude instead.
It will be so disheartening if our son bring in the C’s in his report card, yet we fail to encourage his efforts or he tries to lay his bed in his first attempt, yet we fail to appreciate his efforts.
Nothing really helps a child self-esteem than a sincere praise from his or her parents.
Now, let’s become practicable. The next time you go to a restaurant and you enjoyed the meal, say sweet words to the person who made it.
If you enjoyed an excellent service of some sort, show gratitude.
You will be amazed how that can take you on your trip in becoming a people-person.
4. Learn and Recall people’s names correctly.
What is in a name? I just forgot someone’s name, so what? There is more.
People are more interested in their names than any other name.
That is why you find people giving their children their names to keep their history longer.
If you really want to be a people-person, you must learn and recall people’s names with some sort of efforts.
I once co-anchored a gospel concert and when introducing the guest speaker, I made a huge mistake.
I called a wrong surname. Though, it was obvious he knew I referred to him so he stood up.
And as he moved to the podium, the audience applauded.
The guest said, looking at me to the hearing of the audience “young man, if not for the fact that I wanted you to learn, I would not have stood up.
That’s not my name. My name is…” and he called it. I felt embarrassed.
Thank God for the little motivation I got from my co-anchor.
Did I learn? Yes. What did I learn?
This is it, if you want to be a people-person, you have to learn and recall people’s names correctly.
Can I ask you a question? How many people can you remember their first name; 50,500,5000?
The more you recall people’s names, the more you get popular.
The more you get popular, the more you become a people-person.
I know that sometimes it may be difficult to remember a name especially if the name is difficult to pronounce. Don’t ignore it. Learn it.
As a C.E.O or a leader of your company, you need to know every single names of your employees.
Any executive that can’t remember his employee’s name is saying he doesn’t know some important part of his company.
If you want to get along with people easily, you have to be interested in people’s names and this takes a huge effort.
You focus and continuously repeat the names of people till its imbedded in your sub-conscious mind.
Now, if you want to start a conversation, start by recalling people’s names,your relationships will become effective.
5. Don’t find faults and disapprove people
Most of us are guilty of this including me.
How often do we find faults or scold sharply someone who is ‘perceived’ to be wrong?
Inasmuch as we may be right, we lose people-power.
Haven’t you noticed that people are drawn more to people who are not fault finders or judgmental?
Negative criticism or fault-finding stirs resentment, guilty, shame and fear.
Would you like to be the source of these negative emotions? Instead of complaining, why don’t you overlook the person’s flaws and errors?
Complaining doesn’t change people. If you really want to change others, start seeing positively from the other person’s perspective.
When you do this, you will change the way you respond to their shortcomings.
We are emotional creatures. We sure have feelings and anytime we find faults or complain, we injure their emotions and claim to be perfect.
If you want to be a people-person, you must always speak the good of a person at all times.
It takes a solid character, empathy, emotional intelligence to be kind in approval.
If you must correct a flaw, let your words and tone be positive. Let the fault seems very little.
Also, try pointing to people’s mistakes by asking questions if you are feeling the urge to complain.
Finally, becoming a people-person is a desire and it’s gets better the more we apply the techniques listed here and for you to have read up to this stage, I see you really want to connect with people.
This is just part 1, find more on part 2.
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