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5 conversation starters and tricks that work every time and on any person

Posted by on July 4th, 2020 Under Relationship tips, Trending

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Today we’re going to learn about five conversation starters that work every time.

1. What do you think

Sometimes the simplest questions make the best conversation starters, especially when you let someone else step into the spotlight. This trick is really simple, just think of a question… The question itself, is just the tool that you can use to get the conversation rolling.

For example, a new conversation might go like this: After listening to a keynote speaker, imagine you’re sitting in the audience waiting for the next lecture to start and then you notice someone sitting quietly next to you, so you decide to get a conversation going. You turn to them and you say ‘I thought that speaker was really great what did you think?’ The key to this technique isn’t the subject you’re talking about, it’s the way you say it.

Jumping back to our example, you could have said ‘hey what did you think of that speaker?’ and it might have worked. But expressing your own opinion first, sets the tone. Imagine if you asked them for their opinion first and it was completely different from yours, things would get awkward really fast.

So that’s why you tell them your opinion first, introduce something to talk about and you set the tone for the entire conversation. which makes the next part even easier. You’ve told them that you want to hear their opinion so no matter who you’re talking to, they’ll feel comfortable talking back.

2. Franklin’s favours

In the 1700’s Ben Franklin discovered a foolproof way to start a conversation and immediately get on anyone’s good side. All you have to do is lead with a simple favour. Let’s say you’re at a networking event and you spot a stranger across the room, and you want to start up a conversation.

So what should you do you? You could shake their hand and introduce yourself, but that doesn’t feel right because it would make you look like you’re just popping up out of nowhere. What you need is an excuse, a reason to justify starting that conversation and a small favour.

Just walk up and ask for something quick and easy; ask them to take a picture of you or if they know the time. These favors take only a few seconds, but they completely changed the dynamic of your relationship because you’re not just two strangers anymore. A small favour creates a sort of personal bond. Once you’ve gone out of your way to help someone, you’ve invested in them. They matter more to you, and you care about what they think.

The truth is we like people more because we did something nice for them. Thanks to a psychological phenomenon called cognitive dissonance, we want our thoughts and actions to line up. For example, if you punch someone, your brain reasons that you’re angry with them. You may not know why, they may have done nothing wrong, but your brain wants your mind to match your body.

So when you do someone a favour, your brain makes another emotional leap. You tell yourself that you did that person a favour for a reason. You assume it’s because you liked that person, even if you only did something small, like tell them the time. Ben Franklin used the same technique to turn strangers and enemies into lifelong friends, so if you want to start up a conversation don’t be afraid to lead with a favour.

3. Lead with a compliment

Favors aren’t the only way to get on someone’s good side. If you want to start a conversation and make a new friend, try leading with a compliment. Tell someone that you like their shirt, or compliment their haircut.

These genuine surface-level compliments will start any conversation on a high note, because it instantly changes the mood. After receiving a compliment, people are subconsciously warmer, friendlier and more receptive to new things.

It brightens up their day, because a compliment makes them feel recognized and appreciated. It gives them a nice boost of self-esteem, which also makes them more confident from the get-go. But there’s one really important thing to remember; you have to mean it if you’re going to compliment someone, don’t just pull something out of thin air. Don’t pick the first arbitrary thing you see because those compliments feel shallow.

Even though you’re saying something nice, it doesn’t leave a lasting impact on anyone, instead a dishonest compliment will just make things awkward. They’ll think you’re trying to manipulate them and that ruins any chance of building a relationship.

So take a second to think… What do you really admire about this person? What makes them stand out from the crowd? And that way, when you do start up a conversation they’ll know that you aren’t just faking it. They’ll know that you really do appreciate something about them so they’ll feel a lot more comfortable opening up.

4. Blast from the past

Nostalgia is a powerful tool for any conversationalist. If you’re looking to meet new people, asking about their hometown is a great place to start. It’s a subject that almost everyone feels comfortable with because, there’s really no risk involved, and not to mention it’s just fun to reminisce about the good old days.

When they think back on the place they grew up, it puts them in a great mood and it opens all kinds of new opportunities for you. There are practically limitless questions that you can ask about someone’s past. Ask them what it was like to grow up in their hometown, ask what the weather was like in their city. Each of these questions keeps the conversation rolling, without getting too personal.

It forges a meaningful connection without crossing the line, because that’s the one thing you don’t want to do. Don’t interrogate someone about their parents, or other personal matters. If you ask these personal questions right away, they’ll make people really uncomfortable so just keep it general and keep it fun. Any blast from the past should make you remember the good times not the bad.

5. Explore your environment

Finding something in common, is another great way to start a conversation, as it creates an instant bond between you and the other person. It creates a mutual feeling of sympathy, because you’re both having the same kind of experience. Finding something in common can be a little tricky, obviously you just can’t walk up and take a shot in the dark.

For example, if you like traveling, you can’t just randomly ask someone if they do too because there’s a good chance they don’t. Luckily, interests and hobbies aren’t the only things that you two might have in common. No matter where you are, be it at an event, a party or in the shopping mall, there’s always one thing you have in common; your environment. So, use that commonality to your advantage.

If you’re at a house party, talk about the house or the crowd. If you’re networking at a school environment talk about the school or the students. You can start a conversation with any of these topics, because everyone in the room knows exactly what you’re talking about.

You’ll never get a blank stare or get a nervous laugh, and you’ll never risk killing the conversation before it even starts. Just don’t talk about your environment for too long. These conversation starters are designed to get you off the ground, but they won’t keep you in the air.

If you rely too heavily on any conversation starter, you’ll end up suffering through a whole bunch of awkward pauses. So once you feel connected, introduce yourself, ask another question or make a joke. You already survived the hardest part now it’s time to take that conversation to the next level.


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