The Art of Conversation: Change Your Life with Confident Communication
Good conversation is at the heart of networking, meetings, interviews, negotiations and raising your profile. It can ease your way in work, enabling you to build alliances, create strong relationships with staff, bosses and clients, succeed at interviews, motivate and inspire. But conversation is something most of us were never taught! We learn to speak as babies, but how conversation actually works is something most of us pick up only haphazardly, and many have yet to learn. Why is it some of us are stuck for words, but others blabber or can't stop? What is it that some people have naturally which enables them to converse comfortably and easily, to engage people and build better relationships? The Art of Conversation will show you step by step how to converse skillfully and enjoyably with other people, at home, at work, on the phone and in the street- even if you're daunted now, discover the difference good conversation can make in every aspect of your life. Learn to: -Overcome the most common block to good conversation- fear; find out how to break the silence and keep the conversation going - Understand the different types of conversation and how they work- which topics and language are suitable for the occasion - Learn simple methods for being heard and understood, including speaking clearly and audibly, listening well and using non-verbal communication - Find out how to hold a conversation in tricky situations, including how to disagree, how to speak to those in authority and people you find difficult -Use conversation to form relationships, improve friendships, make the sale, chat people up, to learn, influence and persuade.
Preface vii Acknowledgements ix Introduction 1 Part 1: Introducing Conversation 9 1. The Dance of Conversation 11 2. Connecting is What Matters Most 21 3. Getting in the Right State 49 4. Getting a Conversation Going -- The Basics 65 5. Listening 79 Part 2: The Power of Conversation 99 6. Influencing a Conversation 101 7. Different Kinds of Conversation 117 8. Expressing Yourself 155 Part 3: Sailing Through Tricky Waters 171 9. What to Do If You're Stuck 173 10. Oiling the Wheels 179 11. Role Playing 183 12. Spotting the Games People Play 187 13. Enjoying Disagreement 197 14. Confrontation 201 Part 4: Creative Conversations 213 15. Changing the World One Conversation at a Time 215 About the Author 225 Image Credits 227 Index 229