PERSONAL PR BUILDER. I’ve always been labelled as an “interesting conversationalist” though I seldom talk during conversations. In fact, I often just nod my head and smile, being usually terse with my words. I’m amazed that a lot of people love talking with me and sometimes seek me out for a casual chat.
Since a teenager, I’ve discovered that being a good listener is the best way to converse with people–a good listener is the best “conversationalist,” experts say, and that’s among my personal PR principles. If you want people to like you a lot–especially your boss–be a good listener. A good conversationalist is seldom the guy who talks a lot. In fact, eventually, no one likes the guy. People avoid him. If you want people to stay out of your life, be a talker.
But if you want to be likable, just listen to people sincerely. Most people have a lot of stories to tell and they often look for good audience. In college, I would start friendship easily by simply saying a few introductory words and then listen. I was surprised at how they all had a lot of stories to share.
At first I got bored, but later I discovered the secret to being likable and started enjoying it. You’d be amazed at how simple the formula is–friendship or favor is equal to just listening. From high school to college to the workplace, I’ve been testing the principle and it works all the time. You’d be surprised how folks would willingly give you favors you never asked for. What’s a good listener about?
- He listens well and is sincere about it.
- He takes mental notes of what’s being said and later asks a few questions on it.
- He takes genuine interest in people’s lives and anecdotes.
- He remembers most of them.
- He takes notes of facial expressions and gestures as people narrate their stories (it helps you remember details).
I’m amazed at how I’d remember details about a classmate in kinder, grade school, and especially high school. When I meet some of them today (after almost half a century), I’d recollect those times and they wouldn’t remember anything. They didn’t practice good listening skills. Then they’d be amazed at how good a “conversationalist” I’ve been. However, there are some rules you have to follow, for your own sake:
- Know how to put a limit to conversations politely. Some people love to talk and would take up a lot of your time.
- Know what to say and what not to say. It’s unbelievable how many people are apt to misinterpret you or get offended by your simple remarks.
- When talking with a gossip, be careful with your remarks. Don’t release incriminating words that would later be quoted on and put you in hot seat.
- Never get into debates or even light discussions if you don’t know the person you’re talking with that well. Just listen and stay neutral where siding on issues are concerned, like politics or religion. A lot of people want to talk about religion and their church but are not interested in a real life commitment with Jesus Christ. But there are genuine seekers who have receptive hearts for the truth. A good listener can discern these things well.
- Know how to direct (or control) conversations without being obvious or dominating. I can start talking about food and lead the conversation to spiritual things even if I just listen and nod most of the time. You should learn this conversation skill, and I think I’m going to write on it someday.
I have an e-book on how to be likable to people. If you want to learn a few valuable tips and lessons, buy it by clicking on How to be Easily Likable to Most People on “Links” on the right sidebar. It will take you to my Paypal. After paying, Paypal will immediately direct you back here on a page where you click on a download button for your PDF copy of the e-book.