At the end of an Olive Tree Writing Club session, we split into small groups to discuss how our writing session went. I would go around the circle calling people by name to create the groups. Stephen, a writing club regular, shouted me out in front of everyone that my ability to remember names is remarkable.
I often hear people say they aren’t great at remembering names which makes it more impressive to others that I can remember a large number of names so quickly. One of the first principles in Dale Carnegie’s book, How to Make Friends and Influence People, is that, “a persons name is to that person, the sweetest, most important sound in any language.” This principle has stuck with me since reading it. I always felt seen when someone remembered my name and I wanted others to feel the same way around me.
While I don’t do anything fancy to remember peoples names, here’s a few tips:
- If I meet someone new, I ask for their name and I repeat their name back to them to make sure I got it right. If I’m struggling with the pronunciation I ask them to spell it.
- If I’m hosting an event, I study the guest list just to make sure I know who’s coming.