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Communication tip:

Be prepared

If I want to talk to somebody in a most comfortable way for both of us I like to be as much prepared as possible!

So here is my preparation communication tip:
Find out whatever you can about your conversational partner. Not necessarily his national security number or size of shoe - but try to ascertain what is really important for him.

  • Which are his ethical values?
  • Which are his aims now and for the future?
  • What does he want from you? Which are his hopes?
  • And what does he expect from you?
  • Is he thin-skinned at any topic?
  • Does he have any quirks which are strange but have nothing to do with you right now and should better be ignored more or less for a moment? (Tourette Syndrome or something like that)
  • Does he have any quirks which should be noticed and handled adequate?  (extreme curiosity, Chance of a diabetic coma as a counter-example)
  • Which are the appropriate forms to handle him regarding his culture? Shake hands, rubbing nose or better not…?
  • Does he like chocolate? Does he prefer to be abstinent of alcohol? Is he vegetarian? …
  • Are there any religious particulars to keep in mind?
  • And many questions more…!

You can use the internet to get some of this information. And of course you can bring into play your common sense and your general knowledge. Yes, always a good idea to improve that as much as possible. Keep your eyes and ears open.

Avoid using your knowledge to manipulate your new friend in a way which is of no use for him. Utilise your information to give him what he needs and make him happy! Usually that’s simpler than anything else. Make him feel good. Then you will have reached your first conversational goal as well – easier and faster than you think!

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