Bad conversationalist or good conversationalist?
Over and over again on Saturday night my honey Rick and I found ourselves in situations feeling awkward and struggling to connect with other people. This is not usually the case for me! I love people and getting to know them. However, talking with people Saturday night was like driving down a one-way street without any street lights; the so-called conversation was a dark black cavern of nothing. We asked questions, they answered. We commented on their answers. Then we asked another question and they answered. We commented. This pattern repeated over and over and over. It was actually painful at times to be responsible for carrying the entire interaction. I even tried to pique their interest by sharing a little bit about us to see if they would ask a follow-up question. Nope. I was shocked that 90% of the interactions we had with others went in one direction – their direction. As soon as I realized what was happening, I turned to my honey and said, “I know what my blog is going to be about this week!”
You have likely found yourself in similar situations. You throw the ball of conversation and it drops right at their feet. They don’t make any effort to reach out and catch the ball of conversation, nor do they toss it back to you. It happens in the workplace all of the time. Customer service providers don’t have real conversation with their customers – lowering customer satisfaction. Supervisors don’t have real conversations with their team – decreasing employee engagement. Coworkers don’t have real conversation with other coworkers – causing a lack of team camaraderie.
What is wrong? Real conversation requires two-way communication.
7 TIPS for REAL CONVERSATION
If you know a bad conversationalist, do them a favor and pass this on. If you are the bad conversationalist, do yourself a favor and practice some DOs of real conversation.