Small Talk Tips

Small talk is an excellent sales tool.  This course will focus on techniques that can support you on your way to better small talk.

Better Small Talk Tips

Tips that support effective small talk.

Tip #1:  Demonstrate interest in your conversation partner.

"Let the other person speak more," Anam Gulraiz writes.  "People LOVE talking about themselves."

Showing interest opens conversation and allows a connection between people.  You can show interest by maintaining eye contact, asking question and allowing the other person to speak more.

Tips that support effective small talk.

Tip 2:  Asking Open-ended Questions

"In general, open-ended questions lead to more conversational paths," Craig Weiland says.

Asking open-ending questions allows the other person to engage in conversation.  Avoid yes/no questions.  Instead ask questions that begin with how, what, and why.

Tips that support effective small talk.

Tip 3:  Allow your conversation partner to teach you

"If there's a subject you're not familiar with, just be honest with that person and nine out of 10 times they'll teach you about it," Michael Wong.

You can learn from your conversation partner.  If you are not familiar with something, ask your partner.  They can share their expertise.  This allows them to become comfortable with you and allows you to learn in the process.  A win-win scenario!

Tips that support effective small talk.

Tip 4:  Read the News

Just as you would for any project, studying is very important  Preparing for a social event or meeting with client can help you begin and maintain a conversation.  The best way to prepare is to read the paper, including sections you normally don't read.  If you don't know how to start a conversation, it is easy to say..."did you read about the news on..?" 

Tips that support effective small talk.

Tip 5: Copy Good Conversationalists

"Listen to comedians, listen to talk-show hosts, listen to real people," says Edahan Small.

They are the experts at controlling conversation, filling quiet time and creating quick connections to their conversation partners.  Evaluate their techniques and practice the ones that work for you.

 

Tips that support effective small talk.

Tip 6:  Boost your conversation partner's self-esteem

"Try to make everyone you talk with feel a little better about themselves after having met and talked to you," says Joe Goebel.

Flattery can help you capture the attention of a conversation partner.  The flattery must be organic.  Look for a positive characteristic that you can highlight.  Try to relate to that positive characteristics by asking question such as, "I see your really good at ...." or "I have always wanted to know more about..."

 

 

Time to practice

Identify the six tips for Small Talk.

  • Demonstrate interest in your conversation partner
  • Ask open-ended questions
  • Allow your conversation partner to teach you
  • Read the news
  • Be honest
  • Copy good conversationalists
  • Boost your conversation partner's self-esteem
  • Ask, 'What's keeping you busy these days?'
  • Know that other people feel weird, too

Congrats!

Thanks for completing the course! I hope that you can use the tips to improve your small talk interactions.