Leadership is about creating a clear vision and inspiring others to reach that vision.
Inspiring others requires connecting with others in a powerful way.
There is no word more important than the name of the person (or people) with whom we are connecting. Remember the difference in how you feel when someone does or doesn’t remember your name?
I have struggled with remembering people’s names. Have you?
I was listening to a podcast by Jim Kwik this week, who is a memory expert. I learned a helpful technique to better remember people’s names.
He summarized the components as BE SUAVE.
Believe: we sometimes hear “I am just not good with names...” For anything to be realized, we need to believe it first
Exercise: Just like anything else, practice makes better.
Say the name: When we first meet someone, say that’s person’s name as we meet and greet. “It’s nice to meet you, Demetrius.”
Use the name: During your conversation with this person, use that person’s name from time to time. About 3-4 times only. If you use it 30 times, it would sound contrived.
Ask about their name: You can ask what the name means. People may share the origin of their name, which will help you remember. People may share family stories related to their name, which allows you to build a connection in a very special way.
Visualize: Turn the name to a visual - but keep this visual only to yourself. For example, you may associate Mary with a “Merry Go-Around” and you will bring up that mental visual every time you say that name to anchor that connection. Jim Kwik recommends that we practice our visualization with the top male and female names in our country. This part I definitely still need to work on.
End: When we say goodbye, use that person’s name one more time. “It’s been a pleasure and I will be in touch, Demetrius.” By the end of your conversation, you would have used that person’s name 5-6 times and associated a visual with that name also 5-6 times.
I’d like to add another personal tip: I write down what I learned about that person and his/her name in my Contacts. I review it before I meet with that person again. This helps further strengthen our connection.
What might be intriguing to you that you want to try? What tips could you share in remembering names?