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10 ways to start and maintain a conversation

TTO 2

  • 1. Give someone a compliment and tie it to a question.
    • That is a very nice sweater. Do you mind sharing where you got it?
    • I love your hair. Do you have a favorite salon?
    • Your lunch looks delicious. Did you make it yourself?
  • 2. Start a general conversation but make sure you are sharing too so that it doesn’t feel like an interrogation.
    • How are you?
    • What do you think of this weather?
    • Have you read any good books recently?
    • What have you been up to since I last saw you?
  • 3. Ask open ended questions.
    • Do you like sports?
    • Where do/did you go to college? What is/was your major?
    • How do you like to spend your weekends?
    • Do you enjoy reading?
  • 4. Ask “If you could only” questions.
    • What are the three things you would take with you to a deserted island?
    • You can only eat five different foods for the rest of your life, what are they?
    • If you could pick anyone, who would you like to spend an afternoon with?
    • You are stuck in a cabin for two years. What five books would you take with you?
  • 5. Here are some first date ice-breakers.
    • Where did you grow up?
    • What was it like growing up in your family?
    • Are you a cat or dog person?
    • Do you like to read? Do you like movies?
    • Who is your favorite actor?
  • 6. Start a conversation at work.
    • How was your weekend?
    • What is your favorite lunch restaurant?
    • Is it cold/hot in here or is it just me?
    • How is your day going? Are you busy?
    • Do you have a vacation planned?
  • 7. Find a common ground.
    • What kind of music do you listen to?
    • Who is your favorite author?
    • Do you like to go to concerts?
    • Do you like to travel?
    • Have you been in other countries before?
    • Describe your dream vacation.
  • 8. “Would you rather” questions.
    • Would you rather go without your smartphone or without a car for a month?
    • Would you rather be really busy in a job you love or be able to slack off at a job you are only vaguely interested in?
    • Would you rather be the most popular person or the smartest person in your social group?
    • Would you rather be the worst person on a great team or the best person on a good team?
  • 9. Let’s get serious.
    • If you were granted 3 wishes, but you couldn’t use them to wish for material things, what would you wish for?
    • Who has had the most influence on creating you as a person?
    • Describe the happiest day of your life.
    • Are people basically born good or bad?
    • What quality do you like best in yourself?
    • If you could choose your own first name, what would you choose and why?
  • 10. Use the S.O.F.T.E.N. technique to help create a great non-verbal impression.
    • – Smile
    • Open up your posture
    • Forward lean
    • Touch by shaking hands
    • Eye contact
    • Nod when the other person talks