How to turn small talk into smart conversation
In a situation where people are gathered together, it always involves people trying to talk to each other. In these moments, we often fall short and can't think of anything to say, or worse; we fumble through with the aim of not crashing.
However, we can soar in conversations and learn to turn small talk into big ideas.
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Anthropologist Bronisław Malinowski noted in 1923 that a great deal of talk "does not serve any purpose of communicating ideas" but "to establish bonds of personal union." He also said that small talk was merely a way to fill the silence.
He was wrong. Small talk is not just for those seeking companionship. It enacts and reinforces social roles in a whole range of social, commercial, and professional settings.