We’ve posted before about the importance of networking, of making connections with other professionals and cultivating relationships with them. But, how exactly do you do that? How do you start a conversation with someone when you enter a roomful of people you don’t know?
2. Say something nice.
Another effective and well-received technique is complimenting someone on what he/she is wearing.
3. Share your pain.
Waiting in a long line to get a drink or use the restroom? Complaining about it with someone in line with you is a good way to establish a pact that unites both of you against a common enemy.
4. Talk about the weather? Yep.
This will work because everyone has an opinion about the weather and is usually willing to freely express that opinion.
5. Tell a good story.
Everyone likes a good story. But remember, the key word is good.
6. Talk food to me.
Everyone loves to eat and drink. Is someone drinking an exotic-looking drink? Ask him/her about it. It’s a great way to start a conversation.
7. What’s in a name?
At most of these events folks will be wearing nametags. That’ll give you the opportunity to ask about someone’s name, which is a good conversation starter.
8. Do you work here?
Most people like to talk about themselves. Once they answer that question, you can follow up with others: “What do you do here? Do you like your job? How long have you worked here?”
9. Tell a joke.
Jokes can be some of the best conversation starters. But if you’re not comfortable telling one – it’s tricky, after all – avoid this suggestion.
10. Honesty is still the best policy.
Is there someone in the room you just want to talk to? You don’t have to manufacture a reason. Just tell him/her you wanted to talk to him/her. Your mother was right: Honesty really is the best policy.
Do you have any suggestions? If so, let us know, and we’ll add them to our list.