4 Reasons You Don’t Remember Names

MemoryI found this great article written by Karen Deis – who I regularly follow for sales and marketing tips.  Karen publishes Loan Officer Magazine.

This happens in me and my team quite often and we thought these four (4) reasons you don’t always remember a persons name would be of value to our realtor partners.  We hope this helps your business.

A stranger shakes your hand, says their name, and the next minute you realize you have no idea what their name is.

There are usually 4 reasons why this happens. Maybe this article will help you become more aware of some of those reasons — and what NOT TO DO when you want to (or need to) remember someone’s name.

Here’s what the experts say:

1. Blame Your Brain and Its Working Memory

      One possibility is that when you meet someone new, you’re not focusing on what they’re saying to you. Your brain has two types of memory:

Long-Term Memory, which keeps the memories of your past like why you loved Spiderman in 5th grade.

Short-Term Memory, like when you remember a phone number for a few seconds before you write it down. Your Short-Term Memory, or Working Memory, is fragile and it doesn’t take much to lose a piece of info you’ve stored there. When it comes to names, listen carefully and move it to your Long-Term Memory so it doesn’t get trashed easily

2. The Next-In-Line Effect

        The Next-In-Line Effect happens when you focus too much on what you have to do next (give a speech, ask a specific question, all that) that you don’t give much attention to the person who just introduced themselves. Many of us are multi-taskers and we try to do many things at once. Unfortunately, it’s not that easy. We tend to focus on finding out someone’s name and on what we’re going to do next. At the same time. That usually doesn’t work out well, so it’s best to do one or the other. Take a minute to grasp someone’s name and

then 

      pay attention to what you have to do next.

3. The Societal Pressures of Meeting Someone New

        While learning someone’s name

should 

      be one of the main things you remember after an introduction, a lot of times it gets overshadowed by the societal pressures of meeting new people in the first place. How does the hair look? Dressed appropriately? Anything in the teeth? After all, first impressions are lasting impressions. Don’t freak out so much that you can’t take the time to remember someone’s name. Besides, it’s never as horrifying as you imagine, anyway.

4. You’re Actually Not That Interested

    You’ve made the decision that meeting this person really isn’t that important because, bottom line, it doesn’t really matter. If you just learned the name of someone that you’ll probably never see again in life, then odds are you’re not going waste precious Short-Term Memory space on what their name is. As long as they’re not a potential new best friend or someone super important, then maybe learning a new name doesn’t matter here.

So keep these tips in mind for remembering names, and hopefully the next time someone eagerly waves at you shouting your name, you don’t walk up to them trying to remember their name!

What tips do you use to help you remember a person’s name?

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