Start by Listening
The key to keeping a conversation going is being a good listener. Pay attention to what the other person is saying. Ask follow up questions to show interest and learn more about them. This builds rapport.
Find Common Ground
Look for shared experiences, interests or opinions to relate to the other person. Finding commonalities gives you something to talk about and bond over.
Curiosity about other people will make you more engaging. Ask open-ended questions about their job, hobbies, travels – topics most people enjoy discussing.
Share Relevant Things About Yourself
Open up a bit about your own life too. This reciprocation makes the conversation flow naturally.
Keep Things Positive
Try to steer clear of controversial issues, sensitive topics or excessive complaining early on, as this can shut down conversations.
How can I keep a conversation going if I’m shy?
If you’re shy, focus the conversation on the other person by asking about their interests. This takes the pressure off you while allowing them to open up.
What are some good icebreaker questions?
Good icebreaker questions show interest in someone’s experiences. Ask about their job, last vacation, pets, or favorite books/movies/music.
How do you carry on a conversation that goes quiet?
If a conversation goes quiet, ask an open-ended question or make an observation to introduce a new topic. Commenting on your surroundings can lead to more things to talk about.
What are things you should not talk about when first meeting someone?
Avoid controversial issues like politics and religion. Also best not to overshare personal problems or gossip when first getting to know someone.
How do you end a conversation gracefully?
Wrap up a conversation by summarizing a point made or experience shared. Express appreciation for the chat before saying you need to go. Leaving things open can lead to future conversations.