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What To Do If You Forget Someone's Name

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This entry was posted on 6/6/2006 9:56 PM and is filed under Business,Psychology.

What should you do if you run into someone, and just can't remember their name? Ideally, you'll just admit it. Say you remember them, but their name has just slipped your mind. They'll gladly refresh your memory. Admitting forgetfulness up front is perhaps the best option - if you have the courage to do it. If you don't, fortunately there are other options.

Option 1: Use a third party. If possible, try to get the name of the pseudo-stranger from a friend before you meet her.

Option 2: Make a guess. You're ___, right? If you’re right, the problem is solved. If you’re not, they’ll solve it for you.

Option 3: Introduce to others. Saying "Have you two met?" often gets them to introduce themselves to each other. Alternatively, you could say "I'd like you to meet a friend of mine. Josh and I work together at Amcorp." When your friend with the unknown name introduces himself to your friend you’ll get to pick up the name then.

Option 4: Ask for their business card. This is a very good non-intrusive way for obtaining a person’s name and contact information. You need to keep your records up to date, so this serves two functions.

It doesn't matter which method you use to obtain their name - what matters is that you get it. Using someone's name in conversation makes them feel important, so make sure you have it before you start talking!

Writing down someone's name makes it easier to remember that person.

PalPad lets you record information on people you meet so you'll never have to forget names again:

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