Be it a conversation with friends, colleagues, or people you have newly met, at times, you are left with just nothing to talk about. Or it so happens, that you can’t think of any good conversation topics and that brings an awkward silence in the communication. Everyone in the group then starts expecting someone else to start a conversation and a discussion that could have been fun, never even begins.
Conversations are so important, you know? It’s through them that ideas evolve, it’s because of them that cordial relations are maintained, and it’s due to them that conflicts can be resolved. Conversations enable a healthy exchange of views, they help bridge distances, and allow the building of friendships. It’s through conversations that we get to know people, we are able to socialize, and we can establish a connect with those we like. Here we give you topics that help you start a conversation and also make it interesting.
What makes a topic of conversation interesting? Well, it should invite wide participation, which is to say it should interest the majority. For this to happen, it should be chosen based on the age group and interests of the people involved and depending on the rapport they share with each other. Discussing a trending topic or something that is currently making the news, mostly invites a good participation, as everyone is likely to know about it. Travel experiences, incidents of having met new people, narrating amusing experiences in one’s life, or information about things less known, make for interesting conversation topics. Similarly, based on the age and interests of the group, topics related to sports, celebrities, technology, science, or philosophy can be brought up.
It’s very common to start a conversation with a “How are you?” and then proceed to asking about one’s favorite book, movie, travel destination, and the like. But to give an interesting start to the conversation, some questions like these could help. Here you go.
✦ What’s the meaning of your name?
✦ Who is the most influential person in your life?
✦ Which historical figure, famous personality or book/movie character do you best identify with and why?
✦ What kind of music do you like or dislike? Why?
✦ Where would you never like to go? Why?
✦ Have you had a life-changing experience? What was it?
✦ What is that one thing you can’t live without?
Or use questions like these.
✦ How would you describe your childhood?
✦ Who in your family or friend circle are you the closest to and why?
✦ What’s your idea of a perfect holiday?
✦ If you suddenly get a day off, how would you like to spend it?
✦ Where do you see yourself in another five years?
✦ Whose company do you enjoy the most?
If it’s a group of strangers or if you are initiating a conversation with someone you have just met, you will have to first understand their interests through questions like what their hobbies or fields of interest are. Then, based on their age and where they come from, you could start a conversation on politics, business, economics, sports, entertainment, or safer yet, a topic that’s in the news.
To begin a conversation, you could narrate an interesting incident in your life or a funny story you have read/heard. This helps you invite the group’s interest. Or you could voice your opinions on something and then invite their views on the same. This allows everyone to take part in the conversation and makes them feel involved. Asking open-ended questions or giving them a situation and asking how they would react, can also make a conversation interesting.
Recent developments in science and technology make good topics of conversation. A new research or study, new scientific discoveries, recent developments in technology, new gadgets entering the market, new apps, websites worth visiting or a new product and its features and cost-effectiveness in comparison to its competitors are some other interesting conversation topics.
For a conversation with colleagues, you could talk about the organization’s goals, ask them about their work and share what you do, if you belong to different teams or departments. You could discuss your current and upcoming projects and get to know theirs. A good knowledge sharing or understanding of each other’s roles in the organization leads to an interesting as well as a fruitful conversation. For a pep talk with your team, ask the members about their work, whether they like it, invite their suggestions on improving it, if applicable, and ask them to voice their concerns in case they have any. In a conversation with colleagues, strictly avoid discussing your or anyone else’s personal life. Also, do not entertain gossip.
Initiating an interesting conversation is one thing and maintaining a healthy one is another. To keep everyone interested in the conversation, it is important to be a good speaker as well as a good listener. Especially so when people of different age groups are involved or when everyone does not know each other very well. After having made your point, you should be able to invite the views of other participants, and through your tone and body language, make everyone feel included. While some have the knack to quickly pick up a point and enter a conversation, some others may lack the skill. While some are confident, some might be shy. You should be able to identify this and shape the conversation accordingly. You should be able to maintain the pace of it and keep it going. Topics that may hurt someone or those in which everyone may not be able to take part, should be avoided.
These interesting topics and suggestions should help you start and maintain a good conversation with people you know or those you have just met. Actually, it’s your will to make a conversation interesting that drives you to think of interesting topics too. So go ahead, choose one of these topics or come up with some of your own. Happy talking!