Lara Smith has worked for Wall Street English for 20 years. After studying at Stanford University and subsequently doing a CELTA course, she began her career in teaching. She is obsessed with languages and currently writes blogs at https://www.mimicmethod.com/.
I don't think any rocket-science applies to make a conversation meaningful. You just need to pay the attention and try to get something out of every communication.
We are communication experts when it comes to online conversations with a bunch of emoticons enhancing our expressions! But, surprisingly, as soon as we are asked to take over the stage and communicate with the audience, we panic. Why?
First off, you must overcome the barrier of low confidence. If you are center of attention in the online group of your friends, why can’t it be the case in real life? Obviously, you already know how to grab attention. To make your journey easier from a tech-based communication to real-life communication is what this article about.
Not only that, you need to figure out how to be inspirational, informative, and meaningful when you talk. Conversations are not all about gossips and regular babble or chit chats. To add worth to your words, and your personality, you need to add meaning to your conversations.
So, this article is a two-edged sword that aims at how you can become a confident speaker and how your conversations can become meaningful. It is easy, simple, and you already know it all. Yet, do read it because who knows if I succeed in conveying any extra information or two to you by the end of this article? So, let’s get set go:
1. Listen, First; I said Pay Attention
The first rule of conversation is ‘understanding’ the other person. Yes, understand to be understood—it is from the 7 habits of highly effective people. So, as in textual conversation, we are paying attention to each and every detail of what the other person is trying to say, we MUST do it in real life conversations too.
It is of utmost importance when you are having a conversation with a family member, loved one, or a senior title-holder.
Almost 80 to 90 percent of the times, we are focused on narrating our tales before listening to others. We are focused on our next dialogue and it lets us miss out on what other person is talking about right then.
What happens? You lose track of the conversation and its essence as well. You may respond with a disconnected tale and, thus, the conversation seems meaningless and your words useless to the listener. To grab the listener’s interest, know their interests and follow their trends. They will definitely be more eager to know more about you as well.
2. Learn the Native Language
Due to educational purposes or business purposes, we often have to move to new countries. But, unfortunately, we don’t know the native’s language, so we cannot have a satisfactory conversation with them without a translator.
Translators are quite expensive. So, why not learn some of the basic phrases to converse with the natives. Instead, the basic knowledge of the language will quickly impress your business affiliates in that country and you may end up winning the project.
I remember how much I enjoyed learning common Spanish phrases before moving to Spain. It was a helpful act and made it easy for me to handle regular communications. Rather, learning a new language is truly interesting. It opens up more work opportunities for you.
3. Ask them about How, What, Why, When and Where
To show your interest, you can ask the speaker various questions. It attracts their attention towards you as well. Don’t you know why we enjoy talking to kids for hours? Not only are their answers funny but also they are always coming up with strange questions.
Asking questions is a silent way of acknowledging the fact that you are listening to them and care about their emotions. Once the bonding is developed, your positive conversations would leave an impact on them. Instead, they would show interest in your conversations too.
4. Add Value to Your Words
Empty words are like empty calories that add nothing to your personality. To add value, you MUST convey surprising information, related to the present task to the speaker. Through optimistic talks, you can add value to everyone’s life: those who are listening to you.
If you can suggest a positive step or action in the speakers like based on their problem, it would be a plus. Create lasting relationships by showing love and care for each other (outside the screens).
5. Keep the Tech Gadgets at Bay
Remember, tech gadgets should be kept away or irresponsive while you are having a conversation with anyone. Cutting off someone to take a call looks rude.
Being constantly on the phone demonstrates your personality to be one of the stoic people. They appear less empathetic and trustworthy.
6. Never Be Judgmental
Women, mostly, are judgmental when someone is sharing his/her views. It is another rude gesture on part of the listener. Not being able to understand and acknowledge the speaker’s perspective leads to awkward silence.
Instead, judgmental attitude on part of the listener creates a communication barrier. On the flip side, being more open and vulnerable in your conversations can attract the listener’s attention to your naivety.
7. Relate to the Speaker
You can relate your personal experiences with the speaker and can help them with day-to-day problems. Therefore, it is best to relate your tales and create a sense of bonding among yourself.
Try to focus on something that the other person is passionate about. Be inspirational in your advice and they shouldn’t be empty words. Rather, your advice must be part of your personality. Otherwise, you will lose respect in front of everyone.
8. Give Other Turns Too
The talkative often continue to talk without taking a break or considering the other person’s opinion. Let other’s talk too and know when it is getting too boring or too late for something. Such situations lead to lack of interest too.
Effective communication is not monotonous. Give appropriate pauses, and fluctuate the tone of your voice to grab the attention. Try it, it builds the listener’s interest and you can convey whatever meaningful message you have to tell.
Was this helpful at all? How many tricks you’ve tried and which ones worked for you to become a better communicator?
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