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So thinking about the FIRST things you say to someone.
Often, these can set the tone for the rest of the conversation.
Some people I have come across are a “Robbie the Robot” type conversationalists. (Or Robina if you prefer).
Here is an example.
You – “Hello – How are you doing”
Robbie – “Hello I am Robbie, I am a Financial Advisor*”
You – “OK”
Robbie – “Do you know any financial advisors? It’s a very interesting occupation.”
You – “No and is it really?”
Robbie – “Yes – Here are 101 fascinating facts….”
And that’s about as far as the conversation goes. It’s almost like Robbie has one fixed record in his repertoire and he plays it.
After that conversation will tend to dry up. Until you observe Robbie talking to someone else – playing the same record.
So – if you want to talk to Robbie (not sure why you would given what I have said already) – here are some conversation starters to get you going.
How did you find out about this group?
Have you been here before ? How many times?
Where else do you go compared to this location?
How do you know [INSERT NAME OF GROUP LEADER]?
Who would you like to talk to ?
a)In this group?
Who is a good lead for you?
Do you hang out online ? If so where? Forums, blogs etc
Do you go to any industry specific networking? How does that compare to this ?
How long does it take you to get here?
How did you get here? Where did you park?
Have you got a busy day ahead?/Have you have a busy day today?
And if you can’t jump Robbie the Robot networker out of his groove then you really do need to go and listen to his record a few more times.
*Other professions do this as well as Financial advisors
This short article was first published on the Networking University blog. You can read more of Jonathan's thoughts on his Head of Training blog
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