How to Win Friends and Influence People Historical Context 📖

Dale Carnegie is best known for his best-selling book, How to Win Friends and Influence People, and also for his training institute.

How to Win Friends and Influence People

Dale Carnegie

It all started when he went to the Chautauqua gatherings as a teen. He was so impressed that he started honing his speaking skills. From there he used it successfully in sales and also started teaching it to others.

How to Win Friends and Influence People Historical Context

Public Speaking and Development

Dale Carnegie is regarded as one of the pioneers of self-development and public speaking in the world. He was a writer, tutor, author, and producer of famous courses in social skills, corporate training, self-improvement, public speaking skills, and salesmanship. Carnegie wrote the bestselling book “How to Win Friends and Influence People,” which was published in 1936, and it has remained sought-after to this day.

The book sold extraordinarily well from the beginning, even going through 17 editions in its first year of publication. It was one of the top-ranking books on Time Magazine’s list of 100 most influential books. Subsequently, over 30 million copies have been sold worldwide, making it one of the best-selling books of all time. One of the main ideas in his books is that it is possible to change other people’s behavior by changing our behavior toward them.

As a young boy, he was not very good at athletics, yet he was able to earn respect among his peers and make some good friends because he has a way with words. Even from the youngest of ages, Dale displayed a great passion and love for public speaking and was a prominent figure in the debates held in his high school. From here, his interest in public speaking blossomed, and he continued learning and then teaching public speaking.

Chautauqua Gatherings

During his time in high school, Carnegie frequently attended Chautauqua assemblies. Chautauqua was a movement that focused on adult education in the US, which was popular in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The location was around the Chautauqua lake from which the events presumably got their name.

These events were a source of entertainment to rural communities throughout the country. It also featured popular speakers, preachers, musicians, and entertainers. He was awed by the speakers he heard at these events, which inspired him to join the school debate team, where he became a skillful orator.

He also started dreaming of becoming a Chautauqua lecturer. Many times he entered intercollegiate public speaking competitions and won most of the contests he took part in. His mastery of public speaking was such that other students propounded that they pay him to train them. After high school, he got into the local State Teachers College in Warrensburg; however, because his parents couldn’t afford the $1 a day accommodation, he had to attend school from home.

On his way to school every day, he will be reciting all the great speeches he has learned. On horseback every day, as he rode to and fro school, he fine-tuned his oratory skills. When he began giving classes in public speaking at the Young Men’s Christian Association, he was a relentless practitioner of self-improvement.

Public Speaking Institute

He graduated from college in 1908 and took a job as a traveling salesman for the International Correspondence Schools, based out of Alliance. After that, he took another sales job for the meatpacking business Armour and Company. By 1911, Carnegie quit his job 1911 and took his saved up $500, and moved to New York City to try to make it as an actor. That didn’t work out, and he decided the heater was not for him. He enrolled in the US Army and served briefly.

One day he remembered how his fellow students were paying him to teach them public speaking, and he also realized that it was this skill that helped him do so well as a public speaker. He went to YMCA (Young Men Christian Association) and pitched them the idea to teach public speaking classes for adults for a commission of the entry fee. They agreed and provided him a space to begin night classes, and so began his public speaking classes. Over the next four decades, he would go on to teach tens of thousands of paying students in thousands of seminars across the United States, constantly upgrading and improving his public speaking course.

In 1912 Dale Carnegie founded his Training Institute using materials from the Dale Carnegie’s courses from which he wrote his famous book. Today, the Dale Carnegie organization is a global business with a franchise system of certified trainers who provide training in the following areas – People Skills Training, Presentation Training, Leadership Training, Sales Training, and Organizational Assessments. Dale Carnegie Training organization today boasts of more than 8 million graduates, with over 2,700 professional trainers who deliver Dale Carnegie courses in over 85 countries and 31 languages.

Honors And Legacy

Dale Carnegie is seen as a pioneer in the area of self-help, self-confidence, personal development, and public speaking. In 2011, Time Magazine put his bestselling book “How to Win Friends and Influence People” at number 19 in its ranking of the top 100 most influential nonfiction books of all time. Again, a 2012 Library of Congress survey identified Carnegie’s volume as one of 88 books that shaped America, alongside SlaughterHouse-Five, Grapes of Wrath, and The Invisible Man.

Dale Carnegie’s company became incorporated in 1954 as Dale Carnegie & Associates, Inc. The company also expanded into Europe, Australia, Asia, and South America in the 1950s. In 1967, they responded to changing management needs by creating the first Dale Carnegie Training leadership courses and would eventually grow into a core program called Leadership Training for Managers. In 1972 The course curriculum expanded with the addition of Customer Service Courses and Personal Development Training.

In 1975, The Dale Carnegie training courses were awarded accreditation by the Continuing Education Council, known today as the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training (ACCET). In both 2016 and 2017, the company was named among the Top 20 Sales Training Companies by In 2019 Dale Carnegie was recognized as a Top 20 Leadership Training Company by

In 2020, Dale Carnegie was unveiled as a winner of the 2020 Training Magazine Network Choice Awards in these three categories – Custom Content/Program Development; Learning Portal/LMS; and Measurement, Testing, and Assessment. They were named a Top Leadership Training Company by in 2021.


How much does a Dale Carnegie course cost?

The Dale Carnegie Training Institute has many courses that it teaches its students. The courses have different price ranges. For example, some classes can start at as little as $180 and some classes can be as much as $2,000, according to You can ask after the course in your city and country to know more.

How long is the Dale Carnegie course?

The modern and popular Dale Carnegie Course is divided into twelve sessions which are held in the evening once a week (depending on the country). Each session is about three and one-half hours long and is taught by an instructor who has been trained and qualified to teach the course by Dale Carnegie & Associates.

What does the Dale Carnegie course teach?

This popular Dale Carnegie course helps you to learn the skills that will help you in human relations so you can thrive in any place. This course teaches you interpersonal relationship skills, personal development skills, and how to confidently speak in public. You will learn how to form closer, more rewarding relationships built on trust and respect.

How do I become a Dale Carnegie trainer?

Dale Carnegie Instructors or trainers are specially trained lecturers in public speaking. They start their journey with a genuine desire to help people succeed. In order to offer college accredited programs, the potential instructors must first possess a 4-year degree or higher and have a minimum of 5 years of management and business experience.

How many principles are in How to Win Friends and Influence People

In total there are thirty (30) principles in the book How to Win Friends and Influence People. Some of them are: Be a good listener, remember people’s names, avoid an argument, and don’t criticize, condemn or complain. Others are: genuinely see things from people’s point of view, arouse an eager want in people and more. 

Ugo Juliet
About Ugo Juliet
Ugo Juliet is a passionate lover of books. For over 10 years, she has written books and articles for various organizations. She continues with her passion for literature as an expert analyst on Book Analysis.
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