If you’re interested in improving your conversational skills, there are many ways to do so. For example, you can begin by noticing details about the person you’re talking to. This can be as simple as pointing out an interesting necklace they’re wearing or asking what their hobbies are.
Learning to be a great conversationalist can make all the difference in both your personal and professional life. Here are some tips to get you started:
1. Stay Up-to-Date
Having strong conversation skills can help you engage with your supervisors, co-workers and peers, which can lead to career growth opportunities that weren’t available to you before. You’ll also be able to build stronger relationships with new acquaintances and old friends alike.
Good conversationalists keep up with their field and can easily discuss current trends. They often listen to podcasts, read industry publications and attend webinars to learn what’s new in their field.
Another way to improve your conversation skills is by enrolling in an online English course. ABA English offers a wide range of video lessons, each one tightly focused on a specific topic and designed for learners at all levels.
2. Be Yourself
One of the best ways to learn conversation skills is to become more open to your own interests. This will allow you to connect with others and find things in common.
For example, if you are interested in learning more about 16th-century English fashion, take a look at some new clothing lines or listen to an interesting podcast. This will give you more topics to talk about and help you be a more interesting person.
Another thing that great conversationalists do is notice the details. They notice the way someone looks or the things they bring to a conversation and then they can offer meaningful compliments.
3. Be Curious
People with great conversation skills are curious about the world around them. It makes them easy to talk to because they are interested in other people’s interests as well. They also ask open-ended questions instead of closed ones (questions that can be answered with one word).
Good conversationalists notice the unique details about others and pay attention to them. This enables them to make intelligent guesses about what other people are talking about. They aren’t afraid to give compliments or show that they care about the other person by asking thoughtful questions.
If you want to improve your conversational skills, watch how other people talk to their friends and coworkers. Study their body language and their opening and closing remarks.
4. Notice the Details
One of the main skills that great conversationalists have is noticing the details. They pay attention to things like the necklace someone is wearing or their picture on their phone lock screen, and they use those details to create a connection with the person they are talking to.
To develop your own attention to detail in conversation, try asking quality questions that require more than a yes or no response, such as “What do you mean by that?” or “How do you feel about that?”. You can also practice active listening by repeating back to the other person the most important points of their responses in your own words.
5. Stay Focused
Keeping the conversation going can be hard, especially when you start thinking about how well you’re doing or what to say next. Try to avoid distractions and focus on what your conversation partner is saying. If you can’t understand what they’re saying, ask questions to clarify or paraphrase back what they’ve said to show that you’re listening.
Great conversationalists keep their conversations going by asking questions, listening to the answers and sharing something about themselves too. Learning how to keep a conversation going can be helpful in both professional and personal settings. For example, you might need to have a conversation with a client or colleague about business.
6. Keep the Conversation Going
Many people worry that they won’t be able to keep the conversation going. They worry that they will run out of things to say, or that the other person will be bored with them.
Keep in mind that good conversation is often about listening as much as it is about talking. A great way to keep the conversation going is to ask open questions that require more than a yes or no answer, such as “What’s your favorite vacation spot?” or “What made you get into your profession?”
Body language also plays a big part in keeping conversations interesting. Avoid crossing your arms or looking glazed over, which can be interpreted as defensive or uninterested.