1.  Showing Genuine Appreciation

The other day after a “get to know you lunch” with a “fellow traveler” who I had arranged to meet for the first time, I received  a “thank you” note in follow-up.

Why was I impressed? Because the card was thoughtfully hand written and came in the post.  All these things made it “stand-out” as opposed to the rushed perfunctory “thank you” sent by e-mail.

The email “thank you” is a lot better than nothing – but the hand written note lifted-it to another level

This brings me to my next related point

2. Flattery

As the best-selling author and researcher  Robert Cialdini  noted in his  book “Influence”  – we are all phenomenal suckers for flattery – we tend as a rule to believe the praise and to like those who provide it”.

My new friend mentioned earlier – also made good use of this in his hand written note, complimenting me on something, not something particularly impressive – but it seemed genuine.

Was I “seduced” by his compliment?  “Seduction” may be a stretch, but it did make me like him just a little bit more!

3. Praise – catching others doing something right

This third point builds on the previous points – the power of praise.

Kenneth Blanchard in his best seller “The one minute manager” – said as managers we should try to catch those working with us doing something right.

In respect to praise  – Blanchard said it works best when:

  • We praise people immediately
  • Tell people what they did right – be specific
  • Tell people how good you feel about what they did right, and how it helps the organization & other people who work there
  • Encourage them to do more of the same!


So there you have it – 3 easy habits anyone can apply. You just need to have the right “mind-set” and  be alert  to apply – appreciation, flattery and praise, habits that can significantly improve your “likability” and influence with others no matter who.