First off, I have to say…
I am not good at many things.
I’m not prettier, funnier, more athletic, or smarter than most of my peers, BUT…
One thing I have mastered is getting what I want…usually for free. The “only child” thing could have something to do with it, but I think I’ve figured out the “why” of why some people get what they want more easily than others.
Here are 5 tips and tricks to getting people to like you, help you, and maybe even give you something for free:
-Stop Using People, Befriend Them: This is first on my list, because it’s certainly THE most important. Just about every morning, I get free beverage from the espresso bar near my office. It wasn’t always this way, and free coffee was never the goal, but over time, I got to know each person that works there…I’ve kept up with pregnancies (real and scares), tough breakups, shopping woes, and running jokes. Now, I have an iced coffee and morning chatter with friends rather than employees. All that to say, it’s not wrong to know what people could potentially DO for you, but if that’s your motivation for interaction, you will fail miserably and I will watch you crash and burn while drinking my free iced redeye. When you focus on the need more than the person, that makes you an asshole, and no one wants to help an asshole. Take genuine interest in human beings, I promise it helps.
-Say My Name and Touch My Body: No, these are not just awesome songs by Destiny’s Child and Mariah (clearly they are also that), they’re things you should certainly consider when dealing with people. I try and ALWAYS ask someone’s nombre, it makes people feel A+ (it works especially well at CVS when the cashier looks like they want to keel over and die, you will really catch them off guard) and if you remember it next time, I can almost guarantee that pop pop will get a treat. Try using it frequently in conversation to drill it in your pin head, and then recall will be a lot easier. In addition to name repetition, I almost always venture to give someone a little skin to skin contact…and no, not just hot Tim Riggins-esque dudes. Ladies, I will still probably rest my hand on your arm/back and tell you I like your hair (and mean it). Of course you don’t need to be giving people crotch high-fives or anything, but a simple arm graze, hand shake, or knee pat will do wonders, unless you are meeting Howie Mandel, in that case, DO NOT TOUCH HOWIE.
-Make Vigorous Notes: I’m risking sounding like a total type-A butthole here, but this works people. Make notes with facts about people you meet (yes, notes). I have a whole section on my iPhone devoted to different bars, restaurants, stores, etc with names of employees and ways to remember who is who. Example: Hipster Paradise Tiki Bar= Patrick with clear frame glasses-bartender, Siam…half asian with moderate gunz works M-W, Rosie O’ Donnell…door girl who likes aged gouda.
It’s that easy. Then, next time you go in, you can call them by name and just watch the good times roll. This always equates to the best treatment and as a by-product, I can almost guess your drinks will be free and that Rosie will bring a complementary aged gouda platter over to the table.
-Don’t Fear Asking: The other night, I had a 27th birthday party and hosted cocktails for over 40 guests at a Lower East Side cocktail bar…the plan was to move the party to a lounge/club down the street for some late(ish) night dancing. When we arrived, there was a veleveted-rope line around the block and a tight door, but we were there and i had friends that wanted to move their bodies to the rhythm of the night…so what to do? I walked up to the door and simply asked if my friends and I could come in and not wait in line.
Sure, they hesitated when I told them it was 40+ people but then, on we went, bypassing the ropes and bandage-dressed hopefuls…all of us (mostly dudes). This was BEFORE our promoter friend got in touch (James would have probably saved the day if needed)…it was a lucky NYC moment fo sho. BUT it was a perfect example of just asking and if it fails, it fails…but most of the time it doesn’t. Being friendly, respectful, and plain asking for them to help you almost always works in a pinch.
-Assume People Will Like You: Why wouldn’t they, right? When you think you are worth liking, others tend to concur. I mean, don’t make merch for yourself or anything (I did this already), but know your worth and assume that people are for you, rather than against you.
Good luck out there and if you see me out…you should probably bring me a cheese platter soonish.