We’ve all engaged in some sort of small talk either in the office, on campus, at a party, or other places where you find yourself in the company of others. For some of us, participating in small talk may come easily, while for others it may be quite difficult. Some individuals may find small talk to be irritating while others find it a necessity. In this paper I am going to explore what exactly defines small talk as such; the reasons why people find the need to engage in small talk; the benefits, and disadvantages of small talk; is there an ethical approach to small talk; and provide tips on how to participate in small talk—without it creating an uncomfortable atmosphere.
What exactly defines small talk as such, segregating …show more content…
An altruistic approach is definitely called for when engaging in small talk. The “golden rule” of “Love your neighbor as yourself” should be remembered in these situations. Placing the other person’s feelings first will usually lead to a pleasant conversation with affirmative results. Thus one can also say a utilitarian approach is also necessary when engaging in small talk.
There are some basic guidelines one can follow to assist in creating proficient small talk. The first step before going to a function or gathering is to prepare yourself. Here is a list of tips that will help in engaging in small talk:
1. One should derive at least three topics to discuss as well as four questions that can be asked to others to spark conversation. If you know that there will be people there that you have met before, try to remember some things about them that you can bring up . . . maybe a charity they’re involved with or a hobby they partake in.
2. Be the first to say “Hello.” Offering your name when greeting someone will avoid an uncomfortable situation of him or her not remembering your name.
3. Make an effort to remember names and use them frequently.
4. Motivate the other person(s) to start talking by asking an open-ended question that is common ground, such as, “How do you know the host?”
5. Be an active listener and provide feedback.
6. You were given two ears and one mouth . . . you should listen twice as