So tell me what do you want to talk about? The weather? A problem at work you’re having? The Olympics? Wait. Maybe you want to discuss this new killer idea you have that will take the world by storm! Whichever one of these it is that you want to talk about, I am sure that you don’t want to people to just “hear” you but you want them to pay close attention to what you are saying.
Just take Paul Jay CEO of the The Real Newsfrom our previous post. His conversation is engaging. It’s passionate. It’s telling you what it is that he is about and what it is he is trying to do in a way that captures your attention.
Now whether you are an innovator trying to discuss your new breakthrough idea, networking to find a new job opportunity, or informational interviewing to find out valuable information about a particular field, your success will be determined in large part by how strong your conversational skills are.
In many ways conversation is an art and a science. Not many think of it like that but once you shift your thinking about it to this way you’ll definitely see a different world when it comes to talking and discussions. Michael Jordan was a master craftsman when it came to basketball because he perceived his “job” as an art and a science. Reading about it. Studying it. Practicing it. Performing it – again and again and again until he was proficient and absolutely dominant. He had a “weight training” program to build a strong, effective, and dangerously efficient basketball game that would dominate his competitors. It’s the same thing with Tiger Woods, David Beckham, or Roger Federer.
It’s the same with any endeavor anyone chooses to pursue. Be it car design, marketing, or teaching you have to see it as an art and a science and weight train in it so that you build strong and effective strategies to accomplish your goals. Now your objectives can only be fine tuned when you establish and build a strong foundation. As a sports player that base is conditioning – being in shape. You can have all the dribbling, kicking, passing, and swinging skills in the world but if your body isn’t prepared for the rigor – you can forget it. In business that strong foundation needs to be conversational skills. You can have the best idea, the best product or the best service in the universe but if you can’t have a great and/or effective conversation about it – you’re done.
Now this isn’t to say that you need to be a conversation guru in order to be successful. But what I am saying is that being savvy with your conversation skills will alleviate many obstacles for you and in numerous ways will streamline your success in whatever endeavors you are pursuing.
Next post I’ll discuss the top 5 strengths needed in order to have successful, effective and productive conversations.