Saturday, November 22, 2008

How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie.

The first print run of this book, in 1937, was a mere 5 000 copies but edition after edition was printed, and on the back it proclaims that more than 15 millions copies have been sold. I suppose it is the granddaddy of the Lowndes book I read yesterday, and I notice that part four is called 'Be A Leader' so it may be more even more useful to me.

There are instructions at the front: I am to read each chapter twice; I am to stop frequently and ask myself questions; I am to underscore each important idea; review the book each month(!); and apply what I learn at every opportunity. However this, and the rest of the instructions, are not really applicable to a virtual hermit such as myself.

I am little apprehensive about starting this book - but here goes...


Blogger Brian Clegg said...

Clare - by the time you finish this research, no one will be able to resist your will. I confidently expect you to take over running the country some time in mid 2009.

Sat Nov 22, 12:09:00 pm  
Blogger JL said...

I prefer Machiavelli. Much more useful.

Sat Nov 22, 02:18:00 pm  
Blogger Clare Dudman said...

Brian: the country? Surely you mean the world...and I've still got a month left before the end of 2008!

JL: That one's next.

Sat Nov 22, 10:49:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Of all the self-help books I've read in my life, I never got around to this one, although I often managed to run into it on library and bookstore shelves. I finally gave up on self-help books when I realized they made me feel horribly flawed.

Sun Nov 23, 12:26:00 am  
Blogger JL said...

Rereading why you are researching charismatic people: You are in Wales, the birthing place of the Great Enlightenment. Do you have no 'Christians' there? Or did you export them all to the US Appalachians? If you have the opportunity, find a fundamentalist church and attend at least one meeting. Politics in the UK will not suffice.

The charismatic behavior of leaders, those who offer SOMETHING missing in the lives of people, individuals, who CHOOSE to become part of a mass group, makes the leader.

Leaders attract people, of course; but WHY they attract them has more to do with them providing a sense of fulfillment or hope, and being an unhuman(word?) projection of value that their attractants can identify with as their desired characteristics, has more to do with their success than their own self.

Think of 'Charismatic' individuals, 'Leaders', as the projection of their followers desires, that happen to coincide with same.

A selfless leader is no different than a selfish leader: They each are the manifestation of the desires of their mass.

Sun Nov 23, 05:18:00 am  
Blogger JL said...

Oh, I like this one:


It sounds very Hammer Films.

Sun Nov 23, 05:21:00 am  
Blogger Clare Dudman said...

JL: Very wise and useful comments, as usual: Thank you. I actually grew up attending chapels, and when I was a young adult I went to 'low' evangelical churches so I feel I know quite a lot about these and know you are right in what you say. At first the character in this book was like that - religious, and used religion in his rhetoric. However, revisiting this it doesn't feel right. This was not a religious commune - although 'the chapel' was an important feature - it was a political separation. I think therefore slightly different charismatic rules apply - although, of course there are useful features that can be gleaned from talented ministers and preachers. I need the details and the subtleties of behaviour and I am finding that books like this provide them.

And Mary, I know exactly what you mean about self-help books! This one too is having the same effect. I am recognising all sorts of little wrong-doings in my past and it is not a particularly pleasant experience. I don't think I would read it for self-improvement in mind because I think I prefer to blunder through life - at least that way my actions would be sincere.

Sun Nov 23, 06:31:00 am  
Blogger Clare Dudman said...

And yes, JL - sometimes these randomly thrown up words seem to have some meaning to me too. I think they are like looking at ink blots sometimes. Just now I had one that would have made a superb name for a character in a children's book.

Sun Nov 23, 06:37:00 am  

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