We all know how to interact, don’t we? We have been having conversations with each other right from the time we learnt how to talk. We even talk to ourselves at times! In that case, all of us are supposed to be experts at having meaningful conversations. However, in reality, things are extremely different.
Through our lives, we tend to pick up a few really bad habits that affect our conversation skills to a very large extent. If we can’t even talk properly and ensure that the meeting is beneficial, we won’t be able to do much of anything else. We will just waste our time in business meetings with absolutely no fruitful results.
It is very important to make the best out of all business meetings and that can only be achieved if you manage to have meaningful conversations.
It is not all that difficult, really. Here are four steps for you to follow to improve your conversation skills:
Understand the Reason Behind the Conversation
This is a little obvious but it is a wonder how many people give this a miss. Why exactly are you having a particular conversation? Don’t you think you should understand that first? If there is absolutely no point of having that conversation, why are you wasting your time with it then? When it comes to friends and family, we have conversations just to relax and have fun. But that can’t be said for business meetings. You can’t go around setting meetings just because you want to have fun! Each and every meeting must have an agenda.
The reason may be as simple as getting to know the other person but there has to be a reason. When you truly understand the reason behind the conversation, you will have a better conversation and you won’t waste your time.
Don’t think too Much
Having a conversation is about listening to every word the other person says. It is not about allowing a hoard of thoughts to creep in while the other person talks away. Your conversation will only be meaningful if you pay attention and reply in kind. Thinking about what the other person thinks of you, whether you will be able to make a sale, whether you’ll be able to make it to the airport in the next two hours, and so on will ruin everything.
Having a conversation is about the other person. It is not about your perspectives.
An excellent way of letting the other person know that you were paying attention is to acknowledge everything he just said. Assess everything you heard and then say it again. That will impress the other person because it is proof that you took in everything he said. At the same time, the other person will clear out any misunderstandings so that you don’t proceed on a wrong note. He will rectify wherever you went wrong in understanding.
What follows will definitely no be based on misunderstanding. That will help make the conversation very meaningful.
Think Twice before your Speak
Don’t just jabber away before thinking. Always, in personal and professional life, think before you answer. Make the conversation even more meaningful with insightful questions and stay focused.
Having a proper conversation is not all that difficult, is it?
Many people take conversations very lightly. When they talk to someone, their mind is generally not in the present. They have a number of things going on in their heads and barely pay attention. Doing that will only waste your time. Always focus on the person who is talking and respond in kind.