Many people say that they are horrible with names.
They shake hands with someone they have just met, the person says his or her name, and within 10 seconds they have forgotten the name. Who has a problem with this – show of hands?
As BNI Champions Members, we all know the importance of building rapport and maintaining a relationship with other business people. That can be difficult when you can’t remember the name of the person sitting next to you at a meeting.
Never fear. There are plenty of techniques and tricks from business pros and memory experts to help you remember names. Thanks to Laura Hale Brockaway from PR Daily, today we are going to go through some of the most effective tips. Try using some of these when you are networking next:
1. Pay attention to the person’s name when it’s said.
This may seem obvious, but it’s not always easy to do. Sometimes people introduce themselves and then jump right in and ask a question. You’re busy focusing on the question and not paying attention to the name. Or maybe you’ve been introduced to a big group of people at the same time and you don’t remember who was who. Do your best to register each name.
2. Say the name aloud as soon as possible.
Repeat the name to yourself and then use it in a sentence. “It’s nice to meet you, Cindy. What did you need my help with?” Then repeat the name to yourself again. End the conversation by using the name again. “I’ll be looking for that email from you, Cindy.”
3. Comment on the name.
This may seem like something George Costanza from “Seinfeld” might do, but finding a way to comment on the name does help. “I have a cousin named Cindy.” “Do you spell Cindy with a ‘y’ or an ‘i’? “Is your last name one word or two?” “What does your last name mean?”
4. Associate the name with something meaningful.
If the person’s name is Brian and your brother is named Brian, tie them together. Picture them standing next to each other. Another trick: Associate the person’s name with what they told you about themselves. Peter owns his own PR firm, has two boys, and likes to play soccer.
5. Form a visual association between the face and the name.
From the person’s physical appearance, create a mental picture of one thing that stands out and associate that with the name. If Sarah is short, remember short Sarah. David Green has brown eyes.
6. Keep looking at the person’s name tag or business card.
As you are speaking, keep the person’s business card in your hand. Glance at the name on the card and at the person, or from the name tag to the person. This will help you associate the face with the name. After the event, write notes about the person on the back of his or her business card.
7. There’s an app for that.
Like almost anything these days there are apps that let you enter information about the person you just met and it uses mnemonics, keywords, and reminders to keep the name in your brain. Of course, you have to remember to use it.