How to Talk to Anyone – Summary

by Mike
How to Talk to Anyone Summary

What is that magic quality that makes some people instantly loved and respected? Everyone wants to be their friend (or, if single, their lover!) in business; they rise swiftly to the top of the corporate ladder. What is their “Midas touch?” It boils down to a more skillful way of dealing with people. Leil Lowndes has spent her career teaching people how to communicate for success.

In this book, Lowndes offers 92 easy and effective sure-fire success techniques – she takes the reader from the first meeting all the way up to sophisticated techniques used by the big winners in life.

Chapter 1 – How to Fascinate Everyone Without Saying a Word

First impressions have awesome potency. The first impression you create is a brilliant holograph. It burns deep into the acquaintance’s eyes and stays in his memory forever. Therefore, it is important you get the first impression right, and you only have ten seconds.

Your body communicates before your lips move; your whole essence has been transported to your acquaintance’s brain before you utter the first word.

How to Make Your Smile Magically Different.

Use the flooding smile technique: Do not flash a quick smile when exchanging pleasantries with someone, as though someone else could obstruct your line of sight and be the beneficiary instead. Rather, look at the person’s face for a second. Soak in their persona before giving a big warm smile, which floods and overviews your eyes. This technique will engulf your acquaintance like a warm wave. This split-second delay will convince people your smile is genuine, and it is meant for only them.

A big sweet smile is an asset, but it can be more impactful when it comes slower; this way, it has more sincerity, credibility and is personalized for who it is meant for.

How to Appear Intelligent and Insightful to Everyone by Using Your Eyes.

The sticky eye technique entails pretending your eyes are glued to your partner with a sticky warm taffy while he converses with you. Do not break eye contact during the conversation, and if you must, do it slowly and reluctantly, slowly stretching the gooey taffy until you break the tiny string.

A study found that the subjects reported feelings of fondness and respect for their colleagues who courted their eye blinks during a conversation.

How to Make Somebody Fall in Love With You Using Your Eyes.

By using the Epoxy Eyes technique, you can make anyone fall in love with you. It is a technique with a powerful punch. To use this technique, have your eyes glued on your target no matter who is speaking, keep looking at them in a way that says “I only have eyes for you” or “I can’t take my eyes off you.”

Have your eyes only on the listener, your target, not the speaker. Be extremely interested in his reactions.

How to Win People’s Hearts by Responding to Their Inner Infant.

You can win anyone’s heart by using the Big-Baby Pivot technique. The moment you are introduced, reward your new acquaintance with the warm smile, a total-body turn, undivided attention you could accord a tiny tyke who crawled up to your feet, turn your acquaintance face up to yours, give a big toothless grin. Pivot 100 percent towards your new acquaintance and say, “I think you are very, very special.”

Chapter 2 – How to Know the Right Word to Say After “hi!”

The more intelligent the individual, the more he is uninterested in small talk.

How to Start Great Small Talk.

Before uttering a word, take a “voice sample of your potential listener and detect his state of mind. Like a “psychic photograph,” determine if the expression on his face looks blitzed, bored, or buoyant. If you want somebody to agree with your thoughts, you need to match their mood to their voice tone before starting small talk. This is the “Make a Mood Match Technique.”

Small talk is not a discussion about facts; it is about getting people at ease. You need to know your listener’s mood. To be a top communicator, pick up your listener’s tone and duplicate it.

This is often observed in nursing mothers; to quiet her baby, a mother does not shake her fingers and scream shut up. No! She picks up her baby and cries “Ooh, ooh, oh,” sympathetically; she tries to match her baby’s misery for some seconds. After which, the mother and her baby are transitioned into hush-hush happy sounds. See your listeners as big babies.

How to Sound Like You Have Got a Super Personality (no Matter What You’re Saying).

This entails using the technique Prosaic with Passion. Are you worried your first words will come out wrong? Don’t be!

About 80% of your listener’s impression of you in the first instance is not about your words. Almost anything you say in the first instance is fine. No matter the text, what matters is a positive demeanor, an empathetic mood, and a passionate delivery — in other words, you need to sound exciting.

Your first words are okay as long as they can put everyone at ease while sounding passionate. You can achieve this by convincing your listeners they are okay and that you share a lot in common.

How to Make Somebody Want to Start a Conversation With You.

Using the “Always Wear A Whatzit,” it becomes easier for a stranger to find you in a crowded room. When going for an outing, carry or wear something unusual, this way, strangers will find an excuse to approach you. A scenario can go thus: “Excuse me, I couldn’t help but notice your…what is that?” and with your Whatzit and business cards, you have all the necessary socializing tools.

How to Meet the Person You Want to Meet.

The Whoozit technique is the most effective but highly underutilized (by non-politicians) meeting-people method. It requires asking the party-giver to introduce you or simply introduce one or two facts and turn them into ice breakers.

How to Break Into a Tight Crowd.

Oh, you do not have a host for Whoozit? No problem, use the “Eavesdrop In technique.” Simply slide behind the group of people you want to infiltrate and eavesdrop. Wait for an excuse, and jump right into the conversation with “Excuse me, I couldn’t help but overhear…”

Of course, they will be taken aback momentarily, but they will get over it, and you will become a part of the conversation.”

Chapter 3 – How to Talk Like a VIP

According to studies, about 85% of an individual’s success is attributed to their communication skills.

How to Find Out What a Group Is Doing (Without Even Asking!).

To find out what a group is up to without asking any questions, you should adopt the “What Do You Do-NOT technique.” A cogent sign you are part of a group is the absence of this question: “What do you do?” Of course, you will need to determine that, but not with those dirty words that label you as a social climber, ruthless networker, a wife hunter, or a gold digger.

Big cats never ask, “What do you do?” they find a subtler way to find out without asking outright. By not asking this question, you appear principled, even spiritual.

A more refined way of asking is, “How do you spend most of your time?”

“So how do you find out what someone does for a living?” (I thought you’d never ask.) You simply practice the following eight words. All together now: “How . . . do . . . you . . . spend . . . most . . . of . . . your . . . time?”

How to Know What to Say When Asked: “What Do You Do?”.

You can answer this question using the “The Nutshell Resume technique.” Take a cue from how job-seeking top managers uniquely tailor their resume for each position they apply for, tell a unique story about your professional life for each listener. Before answering the question “What do you do?” try to identify the particular interest the person could have in the response. “Could it be a business concern? Hire me? Buy from me? Become my buddy? Marry my sister?”

Wherever you go, tell your own story in a unique way to everyone that asks.

The author’s friend Roberto was out of work. He applied for two positions; one a sales manager in an ice cream company and head of strategic planning in a fast-food chain. After extensive research, he found out that the ice cream company had difficulties with sales, and the food chain company had international expansion aspirations.

Did he forward the same resume to both companies? No! His resume captured his education and work experiences and never deviated from the truth. However, in the resume he forwarded to the ice cream company, he included his experience in doubling the sales figure of a small company in three years. In the resume sent to the food chain company, he highlighted his experience working in Europe and other foreign markets.

Both firms offered him a job, so he decided to play them against each other. Roberto went to each explaining he wants to work for the company but had a better offer and a higher salary from another firm. As a result, the two firms started a bidding war. He finally chose the food chain company as it almost doubled the initial salary offered him.

Always ask yourself how your professional experience could benefit the other person. When meeting a loved one or potential friend, make your life sound fun to the other person.

How to Sound Smarter Than You Really Are.

To sound smarter than you are, inculcate the “Your Personal Thesaurus technique.” Look up some of your common words in the thesaurus. Just as you would slip into a new pair of shoes, add a few new words to your everyday vocab to see how they fit. If they sound superb, start making replacements.

Note, the creative vocabulary of a rich individual and an average, middle-of-the-road one is differentiated by only fifty words. Replace some of your common words for two months, and you will be in the verbally elite.

Consider the commonly overused words like good, pretty, nice, or smart, grab a thesaurus, and start replacing them.

Chapter 4 – How to Be an Insider in a Crowd

Have you ever been to a gathering, and everyone seems to be speaking Gobbledygook? They are all discussing the library market, code constraints, or faulty audits, and you have no idea what all these mean. This is because everyone at the party is either a publisher, an architect, an accountant, or a coder, and you are not.

So, you are in the gathering with a pasty smile on your face, scared of uttering a word; you do not appear ignorant. So you are an outsider, and you suffer in silence. How do you overcome this challenge?

How to Be a Modern-Day Renaissance Woman or Man.

You can get a head start by using the “Scramble Therapy technique.” Every month participate in an activity you have never done before, do something you never dream of doing — scramble your life. Go to an exhibition, participate in a sport, hear a lecture on a new topic. You will get 80% of the right lingo and appropriate insider questions from the experiences.

How to Sound Like You Know About Their Hobby or Job.

Professionals speak Gobbledygook as a second language. Gobbledygook is the language of other professions. Why do you need to speak it? Gobbledygook makes you sound like an insider. And how can you learn it? You will not find a cassette on Gobbledygook in the language section of your bookstore; however, it is a simple lingo to learn. Simply ask a friend who speaks Gobbledygook to teach you a few opening questions. It is a lingo with very few words, but the rewards are manifold. This is the “Learn a Little gobbledygook technique.”

How to Bare Their Hot Button.

Use the “Baring Their Hot Button technique” before you jump blindly into a drove of dentists or a bevy of bookbinders. Find out the hot issues in their fields; every field has burning concerns that are oblivious to the outside world. Ask your informant to tell you about the industry buzz. When it is time to heat the conversation, push those buttons.

How to Secretly Learn About Their Lives.

This can be done using the “Read Their Rags techniques.” Is your next client a skier, surfer, swimmer, runner, or golfer? Or are you attending a social function filled with Zen Buddhists, accountants, or anything similar? Several monthly magazines can help you uncover information that will make you sound like an insider, all by reading the rags that serve their racket.

How to Talk When You Are in Other Countries.

The “clear custom techniques” teach that before going to foreign soil, get a book that contains the dos and don’ts of that part of the world. Before you compliment anyone’s possessions, make gestures, give a gift, or shake hands, check the dos and don’ts book. A gaffe could gum up your gig.”

Chapter 5 – How to Sound Like You Are Peas in a Pod

If you squint your eyes well enough at a flight of birds, you will see swallows flying with swallows, finches soaring with finches, and yellow birds winging with yellow birds. The avian apartheid escalates.

You will never see a yellow bird hanging out with a yellow finch or even a barn swallow with a bank swallow; in summary: Birds of a feather flock together.

Fortunately, humans are smarter than birds; we have brains capable of setting bias aside. The brilliant ones break bread together and play together. But this does not mean a high comfort level; on the other hand; it depends on the human being. However, this book is not about the absurdity of apartheid; it is to ensure people are comfortable with doing business or pleasure with you.

How to Make Them Feel You Are of the Same “Class.”

Watch people closely, observe the way they move. Big movements? Small movements? Slow? Fast? Old? Young? Trashy? Classy?

Pretend you are observing a dance instructor explaining some things to you. Is she a balletic mover? Is he a jazzy mover? Watch his style of movement. By doing this, you make your partner comfortable with you. This is the “Be a Copyclass technique.”

How to Make Them Feel That You Are Like “Family.”

The Echoing is a powerful linguistic technique that has a powerful wallop. Carefully observe the speaker’s choice of adjectives, prepositions, verbs, nouns — and echo them back. Hearing these words (which is theirs) come from you will make them feel you share their experiences, interests, attitudes, and values.

Use their words, not yours.

How to Make it Clear to Them.

Does your acquaintance have a garden? Conjure a conversation about “sowing the seeds for success.” Or does he own a boat? Introduce a concept that will “hold water” or “stay afloat.” If a pilot brings up a concept that has to do with “taking off.” If she loves to play tennis, tell her she hit the “sweet spots.” This is the Potent Imaging technique.

Evoke your listener’s lifestyle or interests, weave vivid images around it. To make your words carry more power, use terminologies from your listener’s world; this will go a long way to show your partner you share their interests and like them.

How to Empathize (without Just Saying “Yep, Uh-Huh, Yeah”).

Are you an unconscious summer? Don’t be! Use the “Employ Empathizers Technique” Vocalize complete sentences to show empathy and understanding. Your phrases like “I see what you mean” garnished with something like “That’s a lovely thing to say.” This increases your empathy towards your listener and encourages them to continue the conversation.

Chapter 6 – How to Differentiate Between the Power of Praise from the Folly of Flattery

Hearing compliments from a new person is more potent than when heard from someone you know already. Compliments have more credibility when said to an attractive person whose face you have never seen. You will be taken seriously if you start your comments with some self-effacing remark, but this is only when your listener perceives you as someone higher on the totem pole. If lower, it will reduce your credibility.

How to Compliment Anyone (without Sounding Like You’re Brownnosing).

Use the “Grapevine Glory Technique,” nothing is more exciting than the complements one overhears. The best way to do this is not by telegraph, telephone, but tell a friend. This way, you will escape the suspicion that you are an egg-sucking, bootlicking, apple-polishing, back-scratching sycophant trying to win brownie points. Also, you will leave the recipient with a happy fantasy; they will enjoy the feeling of knowing the world knows about their greatness.

How to Be a Carrier of Good Feelings.

People often metamorphose into a pigeon having a beak and becomes carriers of bad news when there is one; this is gossip. Don’t be this person! Become carriers of good news and praises. Whenever you hear something good about the other person, compliment him. You may not exactly be liked and displayed in a museum for it, but everyone loves the pigeon who bears kind thoughts and good news.

How to Make Them Feel Your Admiration “Just Slipped Out.”

Every once in a while, introduce a few comments into the conversation that says something positive about who you are talking with.

But be careful, do not blow it like the well-intentioned maintenance man. Or a southern boy at the prom, who thought he was flattering his date by saying, ”Gosh, Mary Lou, for a fat gal, you dance really good.” This is the “Implied Magnificence Technique.”

How to Win People’s Hearts by Being an “Undercover Complimenter.”

To become an undercover complimenter, you need to add praises into the parenthetical part of your sentence stealthily. But, do not try to quiz anyone later on your main point. The accidental adulation triggers a joyful jolt that makes your listener temporarily deaf to anything that follows. This is the “Accidental Adulation Technique.”

How to make them never forget you with a “killer compliment.” By using the “Killer Compliment Technique,” you can make your listener never forget you in a hurry. During the conversation, search for one unique, specific and attractive quality he has, and at the end of the conversation, look him straight in the eye, say his name, and finish with the Killer Compliment.

It would be a definite compliment like “What exquisite eyes you have,” or personal “You have a wonderful air of honesty about you.”

Chapter 7 – How to Direct Dial Their Hearts

Hundreds, or maybe thousands, of people only have an impression of you through that small device on your desk, kitchen wall, or bed table.

They have not actually met you. They have not seen you smile, frown, and never enjoyed your hugs. They have never had the chance to read your body language or know how you dress.

All the perception of you has come through the tiny filaments from thousands of miles away. They feel they know you from the sound of your voice. This is how powerful the telephone is, but not accurate.

How to Sound Exciting on the Phone.

Use the “Talking Gestures Technique.” See yourself as the star of a radio drama every time you have a call. If you want to be perceived as someone engaging, turn your smiles into sounds, nods into noise, and gestures into what your listener can hear. Replace your gestures with talk, then boost the whole act by 30%!

How to Sound Like You Are Close by (Even If You’re Hundreds of Miles Away).

People tend to pay more attention when they hear their name. Use it often when on the phone than you would in person to keep them engaged. Calling your listener by name re-creates the eye contact you might give in person. It will sound pandering, saying someone’s name repeatedly face to face, but on the phone, there is a physical distance that may be a thousand miles away, so spray your conversation with it. This is the “Name Shower Technique.”

How to Make Them Happy They Called You.

Use the “Oh Wow, It’s You!” technique when answering the phone and not an “I’m just so happy all the time.” Your calls should be answered professionally, crisply, and warmly.

After you identify who is talking, burst into a huge smile that will engulf your face and sip into your voice, this way, your caller feels the giant fuzzy smile is reserved for him only.

How to Sneak Past the Gatekeeper.

Use “The Sneaky Screen technique” to sneak past the gatekeeper. If your calls are screened by your staff, inform them to respond cheerfully at first by saying, “Oh yes, I’ll put you right through. May I tell her who’s calling?” On the other hand, if the caller has identified himself: “Oh, of course, Miss. White, I’ll put you right through.” When your secretary comes with the bad news that you are presently unavailable, she won’t take it personally and never feel screened.

How to Get What You Want from Big Shots on the Phone.

Whenever you need to call someone’s home, always greet and identify the person who answers. When you go visiting someone’s office twice or more, make friends with the secretary. If she is close enough to answer the phone, she is well placed to sway the VIP’s opinion of you.”

Chapter 8 – How to Work a Party Like a Smart Politician

Find out “Who’s coming?”. Ask the party-giver about the guest list. A politician will jot down names of those who interest him and try to meet each.

The big cat arrives early to start hitting the marks as each guest arrives. Most times, the VIPs come early to get some business done before the regular party regulars, who incidentally do not like to be the first at a party. Once they have met one, they are on their way to the next.

How to Avoid the Common Party Blooper.

The “Munching or Mingling Technique.” Politicians want to be belly to belly and eyeball to eyeball with their constituents. Just like big winners who are well versed in the science of spatial relationships and the science of proxemics, they are aware that any object except a belt buckle can wedge a brick wall between two people. For this reason, they never eat or drink at a party. You can either come to munch or mingle, but do not do both. Be a good politician, eat before you come to the party.

How to Make an Unforgettable Entrance.

Use the “Rubberneck the Room technique.” When you arrive at a gathering, stop dramatically at the doorway, slowly survey the situation, dart your eyes back and forth like a CIA team ready in a heartbeat to pounce on anything that moves.

While at the doorway, do not stand and take a “look at me pose.” You are not Rubbernecking the Room to show off; it is for you to diagnose the situation you are walking into fully. Take cognizance of the bar, lighting, and, most importantly, the faces. Observe the buzz of the crowd, listen to the music, and the clinking of glasses.

How to Meet People You Really Want to Meet.

To achieve this, use the “Be The Chooser, Not the Choose technique,” the love of your life, your lifelong friend, or your business contact who will make a significant contribution to your future may not be at the party. But someday, he will, therefore, make every party a rehearsal for that big day. Do not wait until the day that he approaches; make it happen by exploring every face in the room, switch from waiting for “ships passing in the night” and move to “Capture whomever you want in your life.

Chapter 9 – How to Break the Treacherous Glass Ceiling of All

“Have your associate or colleagues once made a dumb or insensitive gaffe? How often do you write someone off because of some stupid move? He might not know what he is doing and had no idea he was stepping on your toes. He probably has never been told about the subtleties you are about to read in the final chapter of this book.

How to Win People’s Affection by Overlooking Their Bloopers.

A great communicator will allow his loved ones, acquaintances, associates, and friends the pleasurable myth of being above embarrassing biological functions and commonplace bloopers. They simply do not notice their faux pas, fumbles, and slips. They ignore raspberries and associated signs of human frailty in their associates. As a big winner, do not gape at another’s gaffes. As a rule, do not remind people of the moments they are not shining. This is the “See No Bloopers, Hear No Bloopers techniques.”

How to Win People’s Heart When Their Tongue Is Faltering.

Using the “Lend a Helping Tongue technique,” you can win anyone’s heart even if their mouth is faltering. Whenever your partner’s story gets aborted, let the interruption play out itself. Give him time to dote on the little darling, or pick up the jagged pieces of China, or give their dinner order.

When it has been sorted, simply ask him, “please get back to your story.” Or, remember where he stopped and then ask, “what happened next after the …… (and fill in the last few words)?”

How to Let Them Know “What’s in It” for Them.

Whenever you ask for a favor or a meeting, divulge the particular benefits. Inform the other person what’s in it for you and what he stands to benefit from. If a hidden agenda comes to light later, you may get labeled as a sly fox. This is the “Bare the Buried WIIFM (and WIIFY) technique.”

How to Make People Want to Do Favors for You.

To make anyone do you a favor, use the “Let ‘Em Savor the Favor technique.” Whenever your friend agrees to a favor, allow him to enjoy your beneficence before you make them pay the piper. For how long should you wait? At least twenty-four hours.

How to Ask and Get Favors.

Using the Tit for Tat technique, you can get any favor you want from anyone. Do someone a favor; it becomes apparent he owes you one. Wait for some time before asking to “pay.” Allow him to enjoy the fact that (or fiction) your gesture was out of friendship. Do not make it an apparent “tit for tat” swiftly.”


If you understand human nature and habits, it becomes easy to hone your communication skills and improve your relationships. Always make a good first impression, convey positive body language, assume non-threatening postures, and prepare adequately for meetings. The techniques in this book will help you become confident and comfortable in making new friends quickly.

Try this

Before jumping into a conversation, take a voice sample of the potential listener, and determine his state of mind.

Determine the expression on his face, whether blitzed, bored, or buoyant. If you want him to identify with your thoughts, match their mood to their voice tone, before starting the talk.

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