From last weeks L+L Program: Creativity + Conversation
A typical conversation in our daily lives is actually pretty boring. If you think back to your last few conversations, most of them are nothing special. But there are probably a few conversations you have had over last few weeks that really stand out. Maybe it was with a friend about a new business idea. Or with your boss where you suggested a new idea for the office that he really liked. Or maybe it was with your significant other about a trip you might be taking that you are excited about. Whatever it is, we all have those conversations that really stick. We don’t forget about them, and we think of them often. They excite us.
Being in new business development, I have a lot of conversations with a lot of different people every day. I talk to potential clients, other agencies, entrepreneurs, and many other people throughout my everyday life. After awhile and a lot of conversations, I began noticing that I was using sort of a “script” for a lot of these conversations. I was asking the same, boring questions:
- How are you?
- What do you do?
- Where are you from?
- How’s your day been?
We all get asked these questions all the time. Whether we are speaking to our closest friend that we’ve known for fifteen years or someone that we just met, we ask these questions on repeat throughout our lives. None of my conversations were very unique. I wanted more out of them and I wanted to learn more about these people. Who were these people underneath the social script?
It is not hard at all to change your conversations for the better. Simply ask unique and more engaging questions. Instead of asking all of those generic questions, ask things that your counterpart really wants to be asked:
- What passion projects are you working on?
- Have any innovative business ideas?
- Come across any cool startups lately?
- What gets you up in the morning?
- How did you meet so-and-so?
Asking more specific questions about their lives and what they care about will get them speaking in more detail, allowing you to pick their brains and build a meaningful relationship. And in turn, they are likely to start asking you more unique questions so that you can express yourself and show who you are and why you are unique.
Creating better conversations is beneficial no matter what field or position you are in. Relationships are the most important tool we have, so be sure to separate yourself from the pack by curating a creative conversation that will leave a lasting impact on everyone you meet.
View the presentation here!