Do you find yourself in conversations that linger on the small talk without getting to any substance?
It's perfectly natural to initiate a conversation at a shallow level by talking about sports, or the weather, or current events -- but how do we take it to the next level?
To really develop vital relationships, shouldn't we take our conversations to deeper levels? Shouldn't we find out more about what each of us is all about? Shouldn't we get the important issues -- things we really care about -- up in the air, examine them, probe them, and find some kind of shared meaning (whether or not we agree)?
If you're still talking about the weather or sports, try asking deeper questions. People crave deeper conversations.
What kinds of deeper questions? I'm sure you can come up with some great ones (and I'm eager to hear what they are). Here are some that I've heard or used:
- How do you feel about that?
- What would you do about that if you could do anything?
- Tell me what you think that means...
- What are the leaders missing that you'd do something about?
- What should be our first step to make that better?
- How does that match up with your vision of a better world?
- Do you have any goals around that?
The next time a question about sports or TV pops into your mind as you start or continue a conversation, why not take the opportunity to ask something deeper?
Learn more at the workshop: Communicating for Results