Is there any social situation worse than when you’ve forgotten the name of an acquaintance?
It happens to everyone (some of us more frequently), but it is so embarrassing and frustrating, and can make you feel really guilty. Whether it’s someone you’ve only just met or someone you’ve been introduced to or see regularly, it can be hard to figure out a way to subtly figure out what their name is.
Do you ask a mutual acquaintance to remind you? Should you just wait for it to drop into conversation somehow? Or do you just ask outright?
None of these are ideal, but here’s a brilliant hack that will spare you any embarrassment, while at the same time sparing the feelings of the person whose name you have forgotten.
Here’s what you need to do:
Say to the person, “sorry, what’s your name again?”
When they reply – no doubt a little hurt or embarrassed that you forgot – with their first name, this is where the magic happens.
You reply, “Oh no, I meant your surname”.
It’s so simple! You now have their name, and you’ve managed to save face and avoid completely hurting their feelings and embarrassing yourself.
This article originally appeared on Starts at 60.