Chapter 9. The Carnegie Principles


“Have complete course on ‘How to Become a Success,’ will swap for room rent.”

 --Classified ad in the Cincinnati Enquirer, 1933

When Dale Carnegie faced his first class at the Harlem YMCA, he experienced a brief moment of panic. These were not college students sitting in front of him. They were hard-headed, battle-weary businesspeople. They were clerks and shopkeepers from Manhattan and Brooklyn. They were blue-collar workers who wanted to get ahead. They were sales reps who needed to do better in their jobs, or else they were going to be fired.

All of a sudden, Carnegie’s original plan to teach them the principles of elocution and declamation seemed pretty inadequate to their needs.

He began to talk, giving them ...

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