Book review: How To Win Friends and Influence People, by Dale Carnegie.
This book mostly deserves its fame. It gives simple descriptions of basic techniques that should make most people who follow the advice more likable than average, without requiring prohibitive effort.
I have two modest complaints.
He focuses more than I would like on how to befriend people who like to talk at length, which leaves me wondering what to do with the potentially nicer friend who is too modest to say interesting things about himself.
The chapter called Make the Fault Seem Easy to Correct encourages misleading people into thinking something is easier than it actually is. Even if this works 75 percent of the time, I expect that the resentment caused by a few rare cases where it turns out to be more misleading than intended outweigh the benefits produced by its successes. The book Switch describes a better version of this strategy (incorporating an important part of what Carnegie advises): focus on breaking down the task into small steps.