Turn Small Talk Into Intriguing Talk

Turn Small Talk Into Intriguing Talk

  • Twist a “light topic” with a serious tone: use what you already know to ask more personal questions or go deeper into topics.
  • Play it straight: admit that you don’t like to chit-chat, and have a few discussion topics or questions ready to toss out.
  • Issue an invitation: when you are in public and have something secretive to discuss, say you’d like to talk later. 
  • Compliment: do so preferably on an area you wanted to discuss with them, then ask a question that starts the dialogue. Sincere compliments make the conversation deeper.
  • Be Vulnerable: speak your mind and end with a question. Others will often reciprocate about what they think or feel. 
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The weirdness of it

Reaching out privately to a colleague can feel weird because making the active decision to initiate a conversation usually creates the expectation that you want something.
So explain why you're reaching out. Always give a reason why you want to talk to someone. Also, send one message, then wait for a response. And if someone continually doesn't respond when you reach out, take the hint.

COVID-19 and Small Talk

In our pandemic world, casual conversation has been all but eliminated. The closest thing we get these days is saying “thank you” to a delivery person or greeting a grocery store clerk. Even then, we're hesitant to linger — every unnecessary moment with a stranger feels taboo, every breath a hazard. And, now, in the absence of chit-chat, we feel isolated and unenergized. This has led to a potentially controversial revelation: small talk gets an unfairly bad rap.

Small talk

Not everyone enjoys small talk. It is not that they are not comfortable talking, but one-on-one, small talk remains an issue.

Small talk precedes big talk in the normal course of human affairs. Most people feel the need to connect first before they delve into the serious conversation or ongoing friendships - which means those who avoid small talk are removing themselves from meaningful social interaction.

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