Saturday, April 30, 2016

10 Ways to Have a Better Conversation

I just listened to a 12 minute speech by NPR Radio Host Celeste Headlee entitled “10 Ways to Have a Better Conversation.” I’ve never heard of her but love her thoughts. If you’d don’t have 12 minutes to listen here is brief a summary.

  1. Don’t multi-task. Be present in the moment.
  2. Don’t pontificate. Enter every conversation as if you have something to learn. If you want to pontificate write a blog :)
  3. Use open ended questions. Start with who, what, when or why questions.
  4. Go with the flow. Let thoughts flow into and out of your mind. That is don’t let yourself be distracted by random thoughts.
  5. If you don’t know then say you don’t know.
  6. Don’t equate your experience with theirs. Conversations are not a promotional opportunity
  7. Try not to repeat yourself.
  8. Stay out of the weeds. People don’t care about dates, times, places. They care about you.
  9. Listen. While 9th on this list this is the most important. Calvin Coolidge “No man ever listened his way out of a job.” 
  10. Be brief.

 Bottom line:
Be interested in other people. Ask questions, listen, and be prepared to be amazed.

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