I like to say the name of the person I am speaking to… I have no idea why, it just seems right. OK, that’s not a big thing — many people do it. The real problem is it takes me longer than most to remember a person’s name. This can be a real problem; especially, if you like to say person’s name before starting a conversation. You tend to sound like a moron.
One of two things happens. Maybe you blurt out their names like you just caught them stealing pudding. That’s not a disarming quality. The other possibility is you blank and insert a huge pause after the words “Hey…”. That’s nice. After an uncomfortable 2-3 seconds you announce their names like someone just handed you a cue card. Disgusting.
I’ve thought of a simple solution. I did this back in ‘04: don’t say names. Just don’t. Let me explain: if the name of the person is not required, don’t say it! If it’s required, don’t speak to them until you have the names clear in your head. Oh, and take a pause before you say the name. Without the pause, it comes out like you’ve been waiting to tell them a secret. I remember a lot of stuff (some good, some crap), but names give me the hardest time.