quick tip for remembering names at, during and after meetings

i am terrible at remembering names. well, actually i am terrible remembering names the first ten seconds i meet someone. unfortunately that is exactly the time when people think it would be a good idea to introduce themselves.

it gets worse with the number of people simultaneously introducing themselves. it's like a dog trying to catch 300 tennis balls at once. that's me trying to remember multiple names.

but fear no more, here is a clever trick i learned some time ago. whenever i go to a meeting i bring my notebook along and quickly sketch the table. around the table i then put names, depending on where they sit. as i usually don't manage to add all names at once before the meeting starts i continue to add missing names and their roles, companies or departments during the meeting. after a few minutes my sketch is complete and i seldomly have to look up names after a little while. by keeping the sketches in my notebook i can quickly look up their names when i need to do so afterwards.

the great thing about this is that while doing this you help your brain to remember names more easily. first, you repeat names multiple times by hearing, writing and looking them up. moreover you instantaneously connect the person's name to a location, a face and their occupation, company or department. and lastly you help your brain to recall names and faces easier afterwards. problem solved.

by the way, did you know that a person's name is, to that person, the sweetest and most important sound in any language?