Conversation is perhaps one of the most commonly employed methods of self expression that characterizes our everyday speech-making activity.
Although conversation occur normally and naturally to us, most of us tend to take for granted our ability to make our conversation in BUSINESS. However, like any other form of communication, conversation required effort, focus, and practice.
Before talking about how to become a good conversationalist ? ,let us known the basic aims of conversations.
PURPOSE OF GENERAL CONVERSATIONS:
Broadly speaking, there are three aims and purposes of conversations.
.Self-expression and Interaction:
The first aim of a conversation is to have the pleasure of self-expression and interaction with customers,company'manager, and other people. We spend time with people whom we like and whose company we find stimulating. This is the driving force behind all our social activities. Whenever we have an opportunity to interact with company's managers, founder, employers, people over dinner, a party, or some occasion, we wish to express ourselves, share our ideas, and get acknowledged as a good conversationalist.
.Getting to Know the Other Person Better:
The second purpose of conversation is to get to understand the other person better. In all kinds of BUSINESS, you require to know the other person so as to get a feel of how he/she thinks, feels, and reacts.
.Building Trust and Credibility:
The third aim of conversation is to build trust and credibility with the people whom you meet. It is only possible with the kind of conversations we have with one another. In our professional lives, particularly for better teamwork, we need to converse well with others. People who get along very well almost invariably spend a lot of time talking about various subjects.
FEATURES OF A GOOD CONVERSATION
Here are the important characteristics of good conversation:
- The conversation should shift back and forth, with each person grtting an opportunity to talk, conversation in this sense is like a ball that is tossed from one person to another, with no one holding on to it for very long.
- It should be clearly and concisely worded.
- The sender deliver the complete message, leaving no room for confusion.
TIPS FOR IMPROVING CONVERSATIONS:
In this section, we will discuss the important tips for improving conversations.
.Spend Unbroken Time:
One of the very best ways to learn about other persons is to spend unbroken time in their com pany. You must have observed that a four or five hour car trip or train journey with another person helps you know him/her better. This is because of the quality and amount of conversation that you have had with the other person.
.Listen More than You Speak:
In conversations, you should listen twice as much as you talk if you want to get a reputation for being an enjoyable person with whom to converse.
The art of good conversation centres very much on your ability to ask questions and to listen attentively to the answers. You can garnish conversations with your insights, ideas, and opinions. However, you perfect the art and skill of conversation by perfecting the art and skill of asking good, well-worded questions that direct the conversation and give other people an opportunity to express themselves. Ask open-ended questions that cannot be answered with a simple "yes or "no". Open-ended questions encourage the speaker to expand on his/her thoughts and comments.
.Resist the Urge to Dominate:
In order to be an excellent conversationalist, you must resist the urge to dominate the discussion. The best conversationalists seem to be easy-going, cheerful, and genuinely interested in the other person. They seem to be quite content with listening when other people are talking and they make their own contributions to the dialogue with remarks that are short and to the point.
Listening is the most important of all skills for a successful conversation. The major reason why most people are poor listeners is that they are busy preparing a reply while the other person is still speaking.
.Use Appropriate Body Language:
You should also nod and smile when you agree to what the person is saying. Be active rather than passive. Suggest non-verbally also that you are totally engaged in the conversation. Throughout the conversation, maintain an eye contact while the other person is talking. A short pause, of three to five seconds, is a very classy thing to do in a conversation. This helps you avoid running the risk of interrupting if the other person wants to still continue.
.Paraphrase the Speaker's Words:
By paraphrasing the speaker's words, you exhibit that you are genuinely paying attention and making every effort to understand his/her thoughts or feelings. This way, they will find you interesting and fascinating They will want to be around you. They will feel relaxed and happy in your presence.
.Apply the Three Cs:
The final key to becoming a great conversationalist is to practise the friendship factor. The friendship factor is based on the three Cs-care, courtesy, and consideration.
Whenever you show another person that you genuinely care about him/her, you come across better as a conversationalist and as a friend. Moreover, courtesy is a magic quality that makes people want to be around you. All good conversationalists make others feel calm and comfortable in their presence. They never do or say anything that could hurt or offend the other person in any way. Moreover, if we respect others and are considerate towards them, we too are respected and considered highly by others.
.Be Fluent while Speaking:
Fluency is a much desired attribute of a good conversationalist. Therefore, be fluent while talking to others. Apart from good listening and regular practice at conversations, having a good vocabulary also helps you attain fluency in your expression. So, be a good reader and try to learn more and more words in order to express yourself effectively and successfully.
Read the short conversations that follow and learn how to converse effectively with others. Some of these conversations have also been included in the CD accompanying the book. Listening to these conversations will help you understand how to maintain the right kind of tone and tenor during such conversations.