Legend Series: Dale Carnegie, Teacher, Optimist, Innovator

Written by Posted On Friday, 10 December 2021 00:00

Dale Carnegie was a legend for multiple reasons. He was the author of the perennial best selling book, How to Win Friends and Influence People, which still sells briskly today, though Simon and Schuster first published it in 1936. I re-read it this year and had forgotten how profound the principles were that he taught so boldly. 

Dale Carnegie also founded the Dale Carnegie Course which was the first nationwide training organization teaching the people skills that he became famous for. The course itself is terrific, and the manner in which he grew it all over America changed tens of thousands of lives.

Below are some meaningful excerpts from two of his works…

This one is from the section of the previously mentioned book on a simple way to make a good impression.

I once spent an afternoon with Maurice Chevalier, and, frankly, I was disappointed. Glum, taciturn, he was sharply different from what I expected – until he smiled. Then it seemed as if the sun had broken through a cloud. If it hadn’t been for his smile, Maurice Chevalier would probably still a cabinet maker back in Paris, following the trade of his father and brothers.

Actions speak louder than words, and a smile says, I like you. You make me happy. I am glad to see you. 

An insincere grin? No. That doesn’t fool anybody. We know it is mechanical and we resent it. I am talking about a real smile, a heartwarming smile that comes from within, the kind of a smile that will bring a good price in the marketplace.

You must have a good time meeting people if you expect them to have a good time meeting you!

You don’t feel like smiling? Then what? Two things. First, force yourself to smile. If you are alone, force yourself to whistle, hum a tune, or sing. Act as if you were already happy, and that will tend to make you happy.

A smile enriches those who receive it, without impoverishing those who give it!

Here is an excerpt from his work, How to Stop Worrying and Start Living… 

One of the best techniques I ever heard of for solving worry problems was from Willis Carrier, the brilliant engineer who launched the air-conditioning industry. I got it from him personally when we were having lunch together one day at the Engineer’s Club of New York.

“When I was a young man,” Mr. Carrier said, “I worked for the Buffalo Forge Company. I was handed the assignment of installing a gas-cleaning device in a plant of the Pittsburgh Plate Glass Company at Crystal City, Missouri, a plant costing them millions of dollars. The purpose of this installation was to remove the impurities from the gas so it could be burned without injuring the engines. The method was new and unforeseen difficulties arose. It worked after a fashion, but not well enough to meet the guarantee we had made. I was stunned by my failure. It was almost as if someone had struck me a blow to the head. My stomach began to twist and turn. For a while, I was so worried that I couldn’t sleep.”

Finally, common sense reminded me that worry wasn’t getting me anywhere; so I figured out a way to handle my problem without worrying. It worked superbly.  The three-step formula I developed is so simple anyone can use it:

1. I analyzed the situation fearlessly and honestly and figured out what was the worst that could possibly happen as a result of this failure. No one was going to jail me or shoot me. That was certain. True, there was a chance I could lose my position; My company could lose a lot of money.

2. I reconciled myself to accepting it, if necessary. I said to myself: “This failure will be a blow to my record, and it might mean the loss of my job; but if it does, I can always get another position. Everyone knows we are experimenting with new methods of cleaning gas, They can charge it up to research, for it is an experiment.

3. From that time on, I calmly devoted my time and energy to trying to improve upon the worst which I had already accepted mentally. Then I figured out ways and means by which I might reduce the loss that we faced. I made several tests and ultimately figured out a solution. 

If I had continued to worry, I probably would never have figured out how to solve the problem because one of the worst features of worrying is that it  destroys our ability to concentrate.
The legends have much to offer us if we study their works and apply their ideas to our current day dilemmas. 
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Don Hutson

After graduation from the University of Memphis, with a major in Sales and a minor in Real Estate, he was #1 salesman in a national organization. He then established his own training firm and shortly thereafter was in demand as a professional speaker.

Since then Don has addressed over half of the Fortune 500 Companies and is featured in over 100 training films. He is Chairman & CEO of U. S. Learning and makes some 50 speaking appearances per year. Perhaps you have seen him on national television where he has been featured on ABC, PBS, TPN and Fox News.

Don is the author of SELLING VALUE, and co-author of the #1 Best Sellers, THE ONE MINUTE ENTREPRENEUR (with Dr. Ken Blanchard) and THE ONE MINUTE NEGOTIATOR (with Dr. George Lucas). He has also authored or co-authored eleven other books.

Don was elected by his peers to the presidency of the National Speakers Association, and has received its prestigious Cavett Award, as member of the year. He has also been honored with NSA's Speakers Hall of Fame Award, and is a recipient their Master of Influence Award along with such notables as Depok Chopra, Jack Kemp and Ronald Reagan. He is also a member of Speakers Roundtable.

He has addressed over 750 Realtor audiences including the National Association of Realtors on multiple occasions, as well as many prominent real estate companies.


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