Carnegie 30-Day Chart

By Aaron Krauss

The Guide to Practicing How to Win Friends and Influence People


The Chart

Week 1 deals with the fundamental techniques in handling people. In a nutshell, be hesitant to criticize others, but unload on the praise and appreciation. Flattery is the enemy of appreciation; make sure you praise people with full sincerity.

A memorable theme for this week is "I will speak ill of no man… and speak all the good I know of everybody." For future weeks, please continue practicing them alongside the other goals for that day.

These basic skills set the stage for the future weeks' skills, and therefore they can't be underestimated.

Week 2 takes the basics to another level.

This week is geared towards helping you make the most of every social interaction around you. You're not trying to influence anyone or be a leader here, you just want to practice being someone that people want to be around.

Just take some time to improve on your existing relationships with friends, coworkers, and everyone else, solely for the goal of becoming a friendlier, more likeable person. Practice these skills diligently. There are some skills down the road that are situational and don't need to be exercised regularly. These are not those skills; the skills in week 2 can and should be exercised all day, every day.

Weeks 3 & 4 revolve around the concept of truly understanding other people's motives and emotions, and building off of that understanding to influence them so they will in turn become more accepting about your thoughts and views. Your goal is to build a foundation of firm respect from other people by showing that you care about their thoughts and interests. Building that respect is one of the most important concepts throughout this whole program, and once you have started gaining it, you can really begin to influence others.

To make the most of these couple weeks, you will need to jump out of your comfort zone a bit and initiate conversations with friends or coworkers about things that are going on in their lives. Do your best to understand your colleagues' struggles and to show that you are interested in them. Don't worry about how to respond, just let them do the talking and be a good, attentive listener. Ask questions, show them you care. Then, once you have enhanced your connection with them, you can start to bring up your own ideas. Maybe you have some thoughts on how to improve the company, or employee happiness, or maybe you just want someone to hear out your ideas too.

Some days will require unique situations in order to practice, such as minor conflict or someone having made a mistake. These days may be tough to practice on, as you certainly don't want to promote conflict just to practice handling it, so just do your best if those situations arise and keep in mind these skills. Other days will require you to promote your thoughts onto your friends, and this is much easier to practice; even if it's not work related, try to find areas of common ground with your friends, and practice influencing your thoughts and ideas.

Weeks 5 & 6 are the last weeks, and are rooted in trying to improve verbal leadership skills.

The buzz word for these couple weeks is feedback. To be a great leader, you have to give feedback. Even if you're not of a "managerial" position, you can still act as a leader amongst your coworkers and friends and give them the praise they deserve for their accomplishments (dig deep to find those accomplishments; deeds like refilling the community coffee pot still deserve appreciation).

The problem with most people's feedback though is that it's typically only negative; we forget to praise people for their good doings, and only comment on what we don't like. These last weeks will focus on giving the right kind of feedback, beginning heavily on the "praise" side of the spectrum. Go a little overboard with your praise, because chances are that you're not giving enough of it anyway. Make sure that it's 100% sincere and honest though; incessant flattery will most likely grant you negative points.

Then, once you understand how to properly praise others' accomplishments, you can begin to bring up some areas of improvement. Remember, anyone can criticize, and anyone can also be hated for it. Utilize your new verbal skills to help others improve their faults, and you might even gain some more respect in the process if you do it with sincerity.

Many of these skills involve you finding opportunities to praise your colleagues, and therefore aren't difficult to practice. However, similarly to weeks 3 and 4, other skills may be more difficult to practice since they're situational, such as finding a fault in someone that you wish to correct. Don't go out of your way to find faults, but if you do find an opportunity where these situations arise, then practice these skills!



Fundamental Techniques in Handling People

  • Don't criticize, condemn, or complain
  • Criticism is often futile and merely puts people on the defensive. Instead try to understand why people do what they do.

  • Give honest and sincere appreciation
  • If you can arouse enthusiasm in people and a sense of good will, you can begin to realize the true power of appreciation. Be anxious to praise and loath to find fault, but be sincere in your appreciation.

  • Arouse in the other person an eager want
  • Henry Ford said that "If there is any one secret of success, it lies in the ability to get the other person's point of view and see things from that person's angle as well as from your own." Put the other person’s wants before your own, and convince them how they can benefit.

How to Win People to Your Way of Thinking

  • Avoid argumentation
  • Avoid arguments like you would rattlesnakes or earthquakes. Most of the time, they’ll just make someone feel embarrassed, uncomfortable, or hurt their pride and make them feel inferior to you. Sure, you may achieve a victory sometimes; but it will be an empty victory because you will never get your opponent's good will.

  • Never say "You're wrong"
  • Telling someone they’re wrong is a direct blow at their intelligence, pride and self-respect. It doesn’t make them want to agree with you, but strike back. If you are going to prove anything, try not to let anyone know about it. Do it subtly and adroitly so that no one knows you’re doing it.

  • If you are wrong, admit it quickly and emphatically
  • Any fool can try to defend his mistakes, but it raises one above the herd to admit one's mistakes. Be humble by saying derogatory things about yourself you know the other person wants to say or intends to say – chances are they will then have a forgiving attitude towards you and minimize your mistakes in their minds.

  • Begin in a friendly way
  • If your temper is aroused and you go off on someone and tell them a thing or two, you might feel good afterwards, but how does that person feel? Do they want to agree with your points after you embarrassed them and attacked their pride? Begin a difficult conversation calmly, and things will turn out much better.

  • Get the other person saying "yes, yes" immediately
  • Ask questions which your opponent is forced to agree with (yes!). Keep on winning one admission after another until you have an armful of yeses to build upon, making your opponent possibly want to conclude with your side being right instead of their own. Once in the “no” state, it takes a LOT of effort and wisdom to try and transform that bristling negative into an affirmative.

  • Let the other person do a great deal of talking
  • Most people trying to win others to their way of thinking do too much talking themselves. Let the other person talk themselves out. They know a lot more about their business and problems than you do. So ask them questions and hear them out.

  • Let the other person feel that the idea is his or hers
  • Most people prefer to feel that they are acting on their own ideas or buying on their own accord, not told or sold something. Feeling it was their idea will make them "want" to do it more.

  • See things from the other's point of view
  • Try to think through that person’s point of view and think why someone should want to adapt to your point of view, and also how they would like to hear what you are saying.

  • Be sympathetic with others' ideas and desires
  • Three-fourths of the people you meet want sympathy. Give it to them and they will love you. One phrase that eliminates ill will, creates good will, and gets people listening to you better: "I don’t blame you one bit for feeling as you do. If I were you I would undoubtedly feel just as you do."

  • Appeal to the nobler motives
  • Everybody usually has two reasons for doing anything: one that sounds good, and then their real reason. The person may know the real reason, but you don’t need to emphasize that. Instead, try appealing to a nobler cause. Show them good motives behind agreeing to what you're trying to convince them.

  • Dramatize your ideas
  • The truth has to be vivid, interesting, dramatic; you have to use showmanship. Do this if you want attention. This does not mean lying, but saying something that dramatizes the importance of something that you’re talking about or trying to convey.

  • Throw down a challenge
  • Stimulate competition, not in a sordid money-getting way, but in the desire to excel. People love the chance to express themselves, their worth, and to show their importance.

Six Ways to Make People Like You

  • Become genuinely interested in other people
  • Care about them and their interests. Do things for others that require time, energy, unselfishness, and thoughtfulness. You can make more friends in 2 months by becoming genuinely interested in other people than you can in 2 years trying to get people interested in you.

  • Smile
  • A smile says "I like you. You make me happy. I am glad to see you." It's been said that "People who smile tend to manage, teach and sell more effectively, and to raise happier children." It's a simple enough idea, so who knows why so few people seem to follow it.

  • Use a person's name
  • Remember that a person's name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language. Make an effort to remember a person's name on the first try. Use it when directly referring to them, interacting with others about them, naming projects, etc.

  • Encourage others to talk about themselves
  • Be an attentive listener. To be interesting, be interested. Ask questions that people will enjoy answering. Encourage them to talk about themselves and their accomplishments.

  • Talk in terms of the other person's interest
  • Try and focus on what that person is interested in and talk about it. Franklin Roosevelt, before having a visitor in his office, used to study topics he knew his guest would be interested in discussing before they came over.

  • Make the other person feel important
  • Always make the other person feel important. William James said, "The deepest principle in human nature is the craving to be appreciated." Help someone feel appreciated and how could they not like you?

Be a Leader: How to Change People Without Giving Offense or Arousing Resentment

  • Begin with praise and honest appreciation
  • It is always more comfortable to hear something unpleasant about ourselves after we have heard some praise about one of our good points. A barber always lathers a man before he shaves him.

  • Call attention to people's mistakes indirectly
  • Many people begin their criticism with sincere praise, but then follow it with the word "but" and end with a critical statement. Once someone hears the “but”, it makes them question the sincerity of the praise and that it was only put there to cushion the insult coming. Try replacing the word “but” with “and”, and reword your criticism a bit to fit the sentence.

  • Talk about your own mistakes before criticizing others
  • It feels a lot better to hear someone talk about their faults and kind of "get down on your level" in a sense before they point out yours. Admitting one’s own mistakes – even when one has corrected them – can help convince someone to change their behavior.

  • Ask questions instead of giving direct orders
  • Giving suggestions instead of giving orders saves a person’s pride and gives him a sense of importance. It encourages cooperation instead of rebellion. Asking questions instead of ordering someone around can make an order seem more palatable and often stimulates the creativity of the person’s you ask

  • Let the other person save face
  • Don't belittle anyone, ever, especially in front of other people. "I have no right to say or do anything that diminishes a man in his own eyes. What matters is not what I think of him, but what he thinks of himself. Hurting a man in his dignity is a crime." – Antoine de Saint-Exupery.

  • Praise every improvement, no matter how small
  • Praise the slightest improvement and praise every improvement. Be “hearty in your approbation and lavish in your praise.” Words of praise can change someone’s life, but give specific praise, not just short flattery. Abilities wither under criticism; they blossom under encouragement.

  • Give the other person a fine reputation to live up to
  • If you want to improve a person in a certain respect, act as though that particular trait were already one of his or her outstanding characteristics. The average person can be led readily if you have his or her respect and if you show that you respect that person for some kind of ability. Give them public praise in front of coworkers or friends.

  • Use encouragement. Make the fault seem easy to correct.
  • Praise someone’s good points and minimize the person’s faults. Let the other person know you have faith in them to get over that obstacle.

  • Make the other person happy about doing what you suggest
  • Be empathetic. Ask yourself what it is the other person really wants. Be sincere. Do not promise anything you can’t deliver. When you make a request, put it in a form that shows the other person how they will benefit from it, and match those benefits to their wants.

How It Works

How It Works

This chart is broken up into 6 weeks, each week with 5 days. Each of these days will be a day that you practice the listed skills, all of which are thoroughly discussed in How to Win Friends and Influence People. Obviously there are 7 days in a week, so you get 2 free days where you don't have to practice these skills (though you still should!). The idea is that you will practice these skills at work, which for most people is 5 days a week, and you can pick whichever 5 practice days you want every week. In addition to practicing at work, these skills are 100% practicable with your personal friends and family at home or at school.

Each day will have anywhere from 1 to 3 skills for you to practice. There's no quantitative amount of practicing where you can say "Daily Mission Accomplished!," so just practice the daily skills until you feel comfortable with them. Each week is categorized in some way, and will be exercising a certain verbal skill set.

If you truly stick with the daily skill goals, then I guarantee you will notice a positive difference among how your colleagues perceive and respect you. The only thing I ask of you is to give this chart an honest chance if you wish to succeed in the covered areas. Please don't half-ass it, or you probably won't see much progress. Remember, this isn't something like a school course that's worth cheating on in order to pass; it's to help you, and only you, so do your best!


This chart was designed to help you better yourself at the art of winning friends, influencing people, and overall just being a better communicator. It is based off of Dale Carnegie's How to Win Friends and Influence People, easily the best and most applicable self-improvement book ever written. You can use this chart as a 30-day practice plan to help you understand and enact upon some of the awesome suggestions in Carnegie's book.

At first glance, the title of this book probably gives off a superficial vibe. After all, the thought of explicitly learning how to get better at "winning friends and influencing people" doesn't sound like like the most humble topic. But I can't tell you how humble the true meaning of this book is. Dale Carnegie genuinely provides you with the tools to create real, honest relationships with everyone you meet, and help you build on the ones you already have.

His book has absolutely zero "tricks" to persuading or influencing others, just practical suggestions on how to enhance every interaction with those around you - as well as helping you to become a better person overall. To prove it to you, some of the covered topics include "Giving honest and sincere appreciation," "Talk about your own mistakes before criticizing others," and "Praise every improvement, no matter how small." That doesn't sound so bad, does it?

So, what do you have to lose? Give the chart a try and see if you notice a difference in your personal relationships with people you have known for a while and also with people you're just meeting!


Hi, I'm Aaron. Want to add something to this chart? Feel free to shoot me an email with your suggestions at Or, if you want to hack on to the site itself, checkout the GitHub repo and make a pull request.