5 Reasons to Master the Art of Conversation
Have you ever thought about the way we communicate in our texting, emailing, social media-obsessed world? With communication becoming more and more diluted by technology (chat acronyms, emojis, and bitmojis) there is a higher than ever importance of valuing great conversation—an essential element in building strong, mutually beneficial, and profitable relationships for business leaders and professionals.
Conversations are the building blocks of relationships
Without them, we form relationships that are devoid of substance. Unfortunately, we live in a world where the standard MO seems to be more email and less talk. People either think they don’t have the time or don’t think it’s necessary to take the time to have real conversations with each other. But if you want to create truly beneficial relationships, it may be helpful to take some time to stop emailing, walk away from the computer, and connect with someone one-on-one through a great conversation.
Here are 5 reasons for mastering the art of conversation
1. It’s the bond of great relationships. You can email someone regularly, but it is only during a real conversation that a bond with them actually begins to strengthen. Think about this in terms of your professional life. Who do you trust more? The business leader who you meet with frequently throughout the year or the one who only communicates via email? Sure, you might enjoy both of them, but when it comes right down to it, your relationship with the one you regularly speak to is probably stronger.
2. It’s the only way to take in the total message. Face-to-face conversations allow you to take the other person’s tone of voice, emotion, and physical gestures into account along with what they are actually saying. It allows you to show that person that you are listening and truly value what they have to say. Your face, eyes, and body language give a range of emotions which indicate whether you are following what the speaker is saying. Your face actively captures information. It’s a simple nod of the head or ‘uh-huh’ that acknowledges you are really listening to what is being said.
3. It’s a great way to invest in others. The act of listening is the other half of having a great conversation and shows people you care. Have you ever been around someone who just wants to listen to you, wants to hear all about your day, or your recent business trip? Someone who is truly interested in you? You might not find them very often, but when you do, they really stick out. When you converse with someone and deeply listen to what they have to say, you show them that you value them.
4. It’s not a requirement to be an extrovert. If you’ve been using your shyness or lack of eloquence as an excuse for relying on technology for a lot of your communication, now’s the time to stop. Being outgoing is not a requirement for participating in or initiating a great conversation. The only requirements are that you be authentic and show that you value what the other person has to say. There’s no need to say anything profound or to impress others with your every word. You just have to participate, actively listen, and be open and honest in what you say.
5. It’s the best way to repair a broken relationship. There are some situations that should only be handled via a conversation. Repairing a broken relationship is one of those situations. When there is an issue with an employee or client, the best course of action is to have a conversation on the phone or in person – even when the conversation might be uncomfortable. Whenever someone is unhappy, make fact to face conversations a standard practice. Chances are both of you will feel much better.
Start a great conversation
If you’ve lost an appreciation for the art of conversation, it’s time to re-open that door. Behind it are stronger relationships, more opportunities, and a more satisfying way of leading in your work and life.
start now . . . Call or meet someone that you haven’t spoken with in awhile and enjoy a great conversation.