What do you do when you forgot someone’s name?

What if the secret ingredient to excel in life lies in good manners? Social know-how helps you make a lasting impression. The first step to perfect manners is introduction which involves someone else’s name.

According to Dale Carnagie, “a person’s name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language”. We want to try to make people feel comfortable and important by remembering their names.

modern manners

How to remember names?
We are visual creatures. Many of us remember faces, but forget names. It happens even to etiquette expert so don’t be too hard on yourself. Neverthless, we strive to commit names to our memory. Here are three things you can do:

  1. Be alert – Pay attention when the name is spoken. Concentrate on that person and the name you want to remember.
  2. Say the person’s name when you’re introduced. Instead of just “Nice to meet you”, say “Nice to met you, Lydia”
  3. Use the name often in the conversation. This shows positive interest and the repetition helps you to remember.


credit: xkcd

What do you do when you forget someone’s name?
With so much in our mind, it’s natural that we forget names sometimes. However, what if an important situation requires you to know that person name – one that will perhaps propels your career – but your mind is blank?

Etiquette expert, Dorothea Johnson, suggest that you stay calm. Then walk over, extend your hand and introduce yourself to someone you recognise, even though you forgot his name. You can say “Good to see you again, but I just can’t recall your name”.

Do remember not to say:

  • “You don’t remember me, do you?” – the tone is accusatory.
  • “I’ve forgotten your name” – you imply that the person wasn’t worth remembering.

Liv Tyler

credit: Liv Tyler's official website

We like Liv’s Tyler’s tip when she forgets someone’s name:

“A lot of times, people know my name and will say, “Hey Liv. How are you?” Or I will be greeted with a hug or kiss like we go way back, but I’ll have no idea what their name is or how I know them. This can be tricky and bit confusing. If I’m with a friend, I’ll introduce my friend and hope the “mystery friend” will supply his or her name. ” – Liv Tyler

Now that you’ve got these tips from etiquette expert and socialite, try to implement them the next time you meet someone new. Good luck!

modern manners by dorothea johnson and liv tyler MODERN MANNERS by Dorothea Johnson and Liv Tyler
From the world-renowned etiquette expert and her granddaughter, Liv Tyler, an elegant guide to 21st-century manners for professionals who want to be confident and successful in the business and social arenas. Developing good manners is an important investment in your future. They allow you to feel at ease in any situation–and give you the polish and confidence to become a leader. With style, wit, and delightful commentary throughout from her granddaughter, Liv Tyler, on everything from being a good guest to finding a balance with technology, Modern Manners is the must-have guide to ensure your success. RM 69.90.

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