“A man always has two reasons for doing anything: a good reason and the real reason.”

~J.P. Morgan

 

 

Human Relations Principle #19: Appeal to the nobler motives.

(“An appeal that everybody likes.”)

(This is the nineteenth in a series of articles where I will encapsulate each of Dale Carnegie’s timeless, life-changing principles for dealing with people. (Adapted from How to Win Friends and Influence People.))*

Dale Carnegie was reared on the edge of Jesse James country out in Missouri, and visited the James farm at Kearney, Missouri, where the son of Jesse James was then living. His wife told Dale stories of how Jesse robbed trains and held up banks and then gave money to the neighboring farmers to pay off their mortgages.

Jesse James probably regarded himself as an idealist at heart, just as Dutch Schultz, Al Capone and many other organized crime “godfathers” did generations later. The fact is that all people you meet have a high regard for themselves and like to be fine and unselfish in their own estimation.

J.P. Morgan observed in one of his analytical interludes, that a person usually has two reasons for doing a thing: one that sounds good and a real one. The person will think of the real reason. You don’t need to emphasize that. But all of us, being idealists at heart, like to think of motives that sound good. So, in order to change a person’s decision or behavior, appeal to the nobler motives.

Here are some nobler motives that people hold dear . . .

  • Being an honorable person of your word
  • Being honest/truthful
  • Being loving
  • Being respectful
  • Being charitable
  • Being reasonable
  • Being fair
  • Being a good mother or father and protector of our children

So, if you want to influence someone’s decision or behavior today, appeal to their nobler motives.

Much success and fulfillment with mastering human relations,

Ray

 

* The best guide on effective human relations that I have ever encountered is How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie, published in 1936. Prior to writing the book, Carnegie spent 20 years researching the habits of successful people. The book has sold over 30 million copies and is still listed on Amazon’s top 100 best selling books.

Other articles within this series you may enjoy:

3 Fundamental Techniques in Handling People

6 Ways to Make People Like You

12 Ways to Win People to Your Way of Thinking

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