The problem with meeting new people or people who you do not know very well is that you tend to find that you put yourself under pressure to talk. What should I talk about? What shall I say? How will I fill this silence in the conversation?
People love to talk about themselves. It’s a fact and I bet you are not an exception to that rule either! Want to know how to build rapport with someone and to hold a conversation? Get them to talk about their favourite subject – themselves!
“What are YOU currently doing career wise?“
“Tell me about this…..“
“I hear YOU have been doing this……“
Ask questions to get them to talk about themselves and then ask some more questions…and then some more!
Their own opinions
Second only to talking about themselves, people love to air their opinions on anything and everything. Ask these questions as well and your new friend could be talking for hours!
“What do you think of the way Manchester United have played this year?“
“What is your opinion on the strike?“
“What do you think of that programme last night?“
However, whatever you do, don’t get into an argument if your opinions differ, unless of course you want to make a sharp exit!
People love to talk about other people. Some people call this gossip, others just call it talking about other people!
“What do you think of that person?“
“Hasn’t that person got great interpersonal skills“
“Isn’t that person a real laugh?“
Next on the pecking order is talking about things. No matter what it is, your friend will have an opinion on it.
“I love YOUR car, how long have YOU had it?“
“What do YOU think of this widget?“
“I love YOUR jacket, where did you get it from?“
It’s a horrible thing to say but the last thing people want to talk about is YOU! Keep the conversation centred around the other person until they ask about you and then it is your turn. To keep their full attention wait until they have finished talking about themselves and they have asked you a question. Then you can talk. When you do talk however, link it into what the other person has already said and you will really be making magical rapport.