Conversation Going – Open-ended questions are an excellent way to begin a conversation. Instead of talking about politics or other subjects of political significance, focus on a topic of mutual interest. Summarizing what you heard can give you something to talk about. If the other person isn’t interested, they may have nothing to say and will give you time to think of a conversation starter. Once you’ve found a topic of interest, create a timeline of the conversation and continue the conversation there.
The use of open-ended questions is an important way to make small talk with new people and form deeper relationships with old friends. Curiosity keeps relationships fresh and healthy. You can ask open questions to break the ice or to gauge a person’s personality. Open questions are much different from closed ones, which are easy to answer in a few words. They also tend to fish for information and make the conversation feel like an interview.
When asking open-ended questions, it’s important to remember that closed-ended questions can be a conversation killer. While yes-or-no questions may lead to a quick answer, they don’t give your conversation partner enough room to dig deeper. A good example of a closed-ended question is “how was your day?”
Focusing on a topic of mutual interest
When engaging in a conversation with someone, it’s often easier to continue a discussion when you are talking about something the other person finds interesting. You can use a turn-around technique to continue the conversation by focusing on a topic that the other person finds interesting. Changing the topic will ensure that you remain interested in the other person’s ideas and thoughts. You can also use this strategy to stay interested in the other person even when the conversation turns off topic.
Often, a conversation will stop when a new person enters the room, or when one person starts talking about a subject they don’t know much about. If this happens, don’t panic and walk away, as you’ll lose the connection that had previously been made. Instead, look for a topic that you have a common interest with Conversation Going. Once you’ve found a topic that is interesting to the other person, you can then move on to something more relevant to the conversation.
Summarizing what you heard
In order to keep a conversation moving, summarizing what you hear is helpful. People often struggle to summarize what they hear, so summarizing what you heard can help. Often, the speaker will want to share more information, so paraphrasing is a great way to show that you understand them. By paraphrasing what you hear, you will ensure that the speaker feels heard and validated, and you’ll create an atmosphere where the conversation can continue.
The key to paraphrasing is to avoid introducing new ideas, and to restate the speaker’s position. This technique is useful for many situations, including reports back to your team or even company blogs. Below, I’ve listed the steps that you should follow when paraphrasing what you heard to keep the conversation going. Remember to keep your notes brief, and use them to write your next company blog or report to your team.
The first step is to summarize what you heard. You can use bullet points or a single paragraph to give a brief, but thorough, overview of what you heard. Don’t include your own opinions, but do use the main points of the written piece. Make sure to reference the original piece in your summary – ideally, in the title and first sentence. If you’re unsure of how to do this, ask a friend or colleague for help.
Creating a timeline of the conversation
Creating a timeline of the conversation before a phone call or text message can help you start a conversation. The conversation should begin at the middle of the timeline, with “now.” This is where you will start your conversation and work backwards. When you start a conversation, it should naturally spiral from the current moment, with banal comments, to childhood memories, dreams, or past experiences.