The Serious Business of Small Talk Becoming Fluent, Comfortable, and Charming
You walk into a room full of strangers and you immediately freeze—wait, no you don't. Instead, you start some light, easy banter with the group of people closest to you. Then you move on to another group. At the end of the meeting or the conference or the party, you leave with a whole new set of connections. It's not an impossible dream.
No communication skill is more important in the world than small talk, says communication coach Carol Fleming. It's how you negotiate the beginning of all relationships. What is more, Fleming reveals, contrary to what most people say, they actually love small talk. Very few of us don't enjoy chewing the fat, shooting the breeze, or otherwise catching up with loved ones and old friends. That's small talk! It's just the one little bit about strangers that throws people off.
Small talk with strangers is a skill, one Fleming has taught to scores of avowed wallflowers. She covers the inner and outer aspects—from the right attitude to how to dress, move around, and introduce yourself. Most importantly, she lays out a series of simple, memorable conversational strategies that make it easy to go from “Nice weather we're having” to a genuine, rewarding give-and-take.
Carol Fleming won't tell you what to say. Believe it or not, you've already got what you need inside you. She merely provides the keys to unlock it.