What makes a good conversation?

Having a conversation with another person is kind of an art. A lot more goes into it than we realize. A conversation can break down for many reasons leaving everyone feeling awkward. To avoid this awkwardness, let’s look at what is involved in making a conversation successful.

Rules for a successful conversations:

  • Make eye contact with your partner to show you’re listening
  • Take turns speaking and listening
  • Use body language to show you’re listening (face your partner, keep your body still, nod along with what they are saying, smile)
  • Try to pick a topic that is interesting to all people in the conversation
  • Listen to what your partner is saying so you can respond appropriately
  • Respond appropriately to the topic
  • Stay on the topic until it is finished
  • Don’t interrupt your partner
  • Make sure your partner is understanding you, if not fix it so they do
  • Ask questions and make comments about what your partner is saying

Watch the video below. What makes this a “bad” conversation? What should these two people do differently to make the conversation more successful?

Now watch this version. Did they fix the errors you saw? Why was this conversation more successful? What else could they talk about?

Practice your conversation skills with your family. Remember the rules to make it your best conversation yet!

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