14 Examples on How To Start a Conversation in the Workplace
Whether you’re a seasoned professional or a new employee at a company, the ability to start conversations is vital for meeting people and creating relationships. To get to know people and build your professional network, knowing the right conversation starters can make you a fun person to chat with and help you avoid awkward experiences. Knowing how to start a conversation can help you improve your personal appeal, improve your communication skills and become more persuasive at work. In this article, we outline several easy ways to start a conversation in the workplace.
The workplace is a formal environment that has specific etiquette for meeting and engaging with people. Learning how to start conversations can help you develop your interpersonal skills, make network connections and foster a positive work environment.
If you want to start a conversation with a coworker you haven’t met before, it’s important to observe professional courtesy. Knowing what to say and the permissible body language to use can help put the other person in the right frame of mind to engage you in a productive conversation. You can work to build rapport first and then leverage that first contact into a valuable relationship that can improve collaboration and dependability in the workplace.
Ice-breakers to start a conversation
You can ask questions about relationships, siblings, children or even pets. So long as your communication skills are good and the questions are not too intimate, people will often feel proud to talk freely about their families.
In the age of on-demand entertainment and blockbuster TV series, entertainment is an important talking point for many people. If you ask someone about their favorite TV show or series, the chances are that they will have one or two they watch.
Being current on the latest news can help you start small talk easily with strangers and acquaintances. Whether you are a fan of traditional newspapers or follow digital alternative news media, you can always open a conversation with questions about local news, happenings in other parts of the world and others. However, it is generally best to leave political news out of the workplace.
Many people take pride in talking about their job and will gladly share thoughts on the role they play in the organization. Whether you are talking to a person in your own company or someone you met recently, asking questions about their duties at work will likely inspire a response.
How to be less nervous when you start a conversation
Here’s how to stop being nervous when you talk to someone: Focus on THEM and THE CONVERSATION. In this step, I’ll show you how to do that.
Practice focusing on the conversation to feel less self-conscious
I’m sure you can come up with more questions. You wouldn’t have to ask all these questions out loud. You can keep them in the back of your head and fire them off to keep the conversation going and avoid awkwardness.
If you tend to overthink, ask yourself what a confident person would do
Have a mission
Thank you very much, David. I can’t express in words that how much it’s helpful to me. Because of your article David, I am opening my inner self. I have been chained by social anxiety, overthinking, self consciousness while talking to other people but now I am improving day by day.
Formerly I was browsing for words & phrases that are commonly used in a conversation after getting to know each other – for my English classes. Then I found your great articles on this site. It’s like winning 1 million dollar lottery. Thank you for sharing this. Great job .
After reading all the articles in this site, I found out that I have been making a huge mistake in my own writing. I need correction while my future work, to sound okay. I do appreciate this work so much and I will like to have more of it , is very helpful to me.
Thank you for your honesty and insight, Jean. I also was quite nervous around girls my age, not always just girls that I liked or maybe liked me. I think that’s wise not only to realize the problems of sticking too tightly to our past, but to live for tomorrow.
“The Infinite Wow! is happening right Now” -probably still my favorite movie, Waking Life. This sounds good and all, right? But I think I get what you’re saying with trying to aim toward tomorrow, while seeing how we can relate with our partner early on and seeing how beginning the foundation makes sense going forward into tomorrow and soon. If we can keep that perspective a bit more, maybe we will be less trapped in the emotions, thoughts, and self doubts, which sprout hesitance and can trip us up between the ears before we’ve found the words to more fully and honestly express ourselves.
May we aim to become more wholly and authentically who we want to be tomorrow, until it’s true today.
This has been and will continue to be helpful for me and my thinking too much. Another personal accomplishment I see more clearly now coming toward the end of this year and that has aloud me to grow more confidence overtime, is not drinking. In the short term I had convincing evidence that the alcohol would snuffle out my nervousness. But I started noticing that it was sometimes slow and lethargic in the mornings, which would carry over to some degree often later in the day. I had a traumatic brain injury in 2002, and realize that these affects are probably more personal than average affects, but I do hope maybe some can relate to and understand that it can cloud the mental scope sometimes. And may we still find and grow more personal connections, which is often even more critical during these tough times of physical distancing, separation, and isolation.
Social skills are definitely that– skills. I’ve been developing them for a few years now, and everything I tend to do now is exactly what you have written on here. Feels amazing, and I get along with people like never before. It was absolutely horrid in the beginning.
THANK YOU for this article. Ive been going to therapy for years, trying to let them know that I need social skills training but they just say they cant help me because Im not autistic. This is the kind of information Ive been wishing they would give me. So this is so helpful so seriously thank you.
Well written article. One good tip I can tell is whenever you want to start a conversation, have a purpose and don’t be vague. It will put off the other person. When there are questions involved listen to the person carefully and follow up with more questions. This will make the other person more interested to talk to you.