How to Remember Names

Have you ever been in one of those situations where you run into someone that you have met before and can’t remember that person’s name? It can be an awkward situation for both you and the other person.

When we remember someone, we’re telling him, “You’re important.” Therefore, when we forget a person, we may leave the opposite impression.

You want great service at a restaurant? Call the waitress by name when you place your order. Want to be the center of influence at a party? Introduce people you just met to others at the party. People love to hear their own name. In fact, Dale Carnegie said that, “a person’s name is to that person, the sweetest most important sound in any language.”

There Is Hope!

One of the first things we teach in High Impact Leaders is a simple technique about how to remember names. A technique so simple that many people in a class of 20 will be able to recall the first and last names of every single person in the classroom within the first hour of class.

One of the ways that we show people how to remember names and get people to strengthen their memory is by getting participants to “stick” the name into their long-term memory using LMER glue. This acronym gives us a simple four-step process.

  • (L) ook and Listen: Look at the person. Get a strong mental image of the person. What characteristics make the person unique? Is the person large, small, tall, thin, lots of hair, no hair? Listen clearly to the name. Ask the person to repeat his/her name if you do not hear the name clearly.
  • (M) ind Picture: Associate the person’s name with a picture that is easy to recall. The full name should create ONE picture. The person whose name you have made a picture of should be in the picture. Difficult names may need to be broken down into syllables to create memorable pictures. Example: Staneart (Stan-irt)-Picture me STANding up to my waist in dIRT.
  • (E) xaggerate: The more exaggerated and colorful the picture, the easier it will be to remember. Make the picture larger than life. Make it funny. Add a little danger.
  • (R) epeat: Repeat the name silently to yourself a few times. Try to use the name in conversation. Introducing the person to others can be an easy way to repeat the name without drawing attention.
How to Remember Names

For More Tips

Our High Impact Leaders class offers Nine different ways to help people learn how to remember names as well as two other memory skills that are pretty amazing.

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