Most of us find the prospect of walking into a room full of strangers daunting due to fear
of sounding boring, awkward, or that we’ll run out of things to say.
Small talk is difficult to avoid in today’s world.
Perhaps it's at a business dinner, and you're sitting next to a new colleague.
Maybe you're at a wedding, and you meet a friend of a friend.
How do you get past the initial introductions?
If you are an introvert, these situations can make you cringe.
You may think small talk is a waste of time and you would rather get straight to the point.
I used to avoid making small talk thinking it was pointless.
Little did I know, it caused me to miss opportunities.
The good news is that small talk does not have to be painful.
By learning simple techniques, you can refine your conversational skills and embrace meeting
When you are in a social setting, do you make small talk to stranger or acquaintance?
This is how you engage, connect and begin to build a relationship.
Instead of thinking, “Who will I have to talk to tonight?” say to yourself, “I
wonder who I’m going to get to meet tonight.”
You never know who you are going to encounter.
They could be your future business partner, your future best friend or wife.
The most common mistake people make is to be passive.
They are reluctant to take initiative to start a conversation.
Nobody wants to stand alone by themselves at a party.
How will you feel if someone took the time to stop and talk to you?
It’s a pleasant feeling.
Instead of waiting others to strike up a conversation, next time you are at a party, I invite you
to go and speak to at least one new person.
Think how that person will feel when you introduce yourself to them.
You might wonder how do I go about making small talk.
This video will show you a step by step process how to make small talk
Make sure you have an approachable body language.
If you want to make a person feel comfortable, the best thing to do is to have an "open stance"
Just make eye contact, don't cross your arms, and face your shoulders toward that person.
Communications coach Dr. Carol Fleming developed a simple step by step process to kick off
The ARE method of initiating small talk Anchor
Anchoring is to find a common ground with the other person.
A common ground can be anything that the person can relate to and that establishes a connection.
Your opening line extends the first little thread of connection between you and another
You can say something about what’s going on in your shared reality.
I’ll give you some examples: Packing up things after class "Professor Hawking
Standing in line at Starbucks: “I just love the smell of the roasted coffee beans.”
A birthday party: "Michelle throws the most amazing parties."
Reveal Say something about yourself that is related
to the anchor you just threw out: I decided to major in Physics because Professor
Hawking is the best teacher I ever had.
Maybe it's the intense drip-coffee -- but seriously, I feel like I am in the zone.
"I met Michelle at a student party a friend took me.
We both went to the same university.
By revealing yourself, you extend the other person a few more threads of connection and
Encourage Now throw the ball to the other person by
asking a question.
Don't ask anything too personal, like the person's health, religion, or political views.
Just keep it light and fun and ask open-ended questions
What do you think of Professor Hawking?
How about you?
How do you know Michelle?
Follow up with a question or statement.
The person's response will influence how you decide to follow up
Try to find a balance between questions and statements.
If you ask too many questions the person will feel like he's being interrogated, conversely,
too many statements won't give the person room to talk.
Here's how you can keep these conversations going:
He is a real inspiration, I’ve started to enjoy studying physics since attending his
That’s amazing, it’s great to hear he has made such an impact to you.
I come here every morning to get my latte, it’s a ritual to start my day.
It’s great to meet another person who likes a good coffee to start the day.
Michelle and I are work colleagues.
You work together!
Isn’t she nuts?
Take the time to listen Actively listening to what the person says
can help you find new common ground and to steer the conversation in a more fun or productive
After you've made small talk but have to exit the conversation to catch up with your friends
or meet other people.
Here are some ways to end the conversation politely
"It's been great talking to you.
I have to go to the next class."
I’d love to keep talking to you but I haven't said hi to my friend Kate yet, and it looks
like she's about to leave."
I would like to thank you for watching this video, I hope you enjoyed it as much as I
enjoyed making it.
Make sure you practice talking to more people and be sure to test the techniques you learnt.
Help support this channel by hitting the like button and leave a comment on how the techniques
work out for you.