Our Blog Posts will help you reach your full potential in becoming a confident conversationalist. New topics each week.
It is a lovely feeling to know you can walk into a room, or log into a virtual one, and say something that will allow you to connect instantly. Football can do that today. Anyone who loves football will also love a conversation starter about the big game. There won’t be a shortage of opinions, and they might not stick to sports, but it’s an easy way to connect with people who love football, food, entertainment.
And if you have colleagues who don’t love football quite as much, there are a number of other sports topics that would make lovely conversation starters this week.
It’s Super Bowl week and the game will dominate a lot of sports, news and entertainment headlines. It’s one of the biggest events - sporting or otherwise - of the year.
Because it’s an event, there’s no limit as to how many sports-adjacent topics you can introduce that relate to the game but don’t have anything to do with the actual matchup between the LA Rams and Cincinnati Bengals at Sofi Stadium in LA. Just take a look at this post from Instagram.
To a hard-core sports fan it might be an odd take, but if you're someone who's more interested in music and entertainment that's one way to frame the half time show.
The Super Bowl is a great opportunity to leverage the sports fandom of others. Football fans will already be talking about the game. It's top of mind. Every football...
Friendly reminder, this is not the week to ignore sports. Even the most casual sports fan can find a way to engage about the Super Bowl and/or the Olympics.
The numbers are staggering.
Sports dominates TV ratings. Just take a look at the numbers. Football accounting for 75 of the top 100 most-watched broadcasts in 2021. If you add up all the sports on the list of most-watched broadcasts you would discover sports accounted for 94 of the 100 listed.
With an average draw of 18.2 million linear TV viewers per game, @SNFonNBC effectively sucked all the air out of primetime.— Sportico (@Sportico) January 7, 2022
All told, live sports accounted for 94 of the year’s 100 largest TV audiences
Full list: https://t.co/9odVatZaLv pic.twitter.com/M6pSvd9Iq6
You know what those sports fans did before, during and after watching those games? They talked about them. Heck, they are still talking about some of those games.
Which should demonstrate how futile it is to try and ban sports talk from business settings. Sports dominates TV viewership and headlines. It’s a ridiculous waste of time to try and police sports-related conversations...
There are two sports stories making headlines and getting airtime on major news networks this week – Tom Brady and the Olympics. Even the Weather Channel paused their coverage of the blizzard in Massachusetts to talk about Tom Brady. Every time I see non-sports outlets talking sports, I’m reminded just how far sports can reach. Here’s what that means for you:
This means you have even more people primed and ready to talk sporty with you this week. Take advantage. Engage in conversation. Get a different point of view and use sports to build relationships.
Here are a few other topics you can try.
Communication is the foundation for relationships.
Effective communication starts with small talk. The chit-chat you might overlook is actually the building block you need to build rapport.
Be strategic and intentional with it. Make a plan for how you’ll approach small talk and make it work for you. I suggest you start with sports. These topics make great conversation starters.
And if you’re communicating with a team of people you might be interested in the Conversation Game Plan training session coming up February 25. Click here for details and to register for the training plus a bonus accountability session. It’s a twofer!
It’s been a while since I offered specific instructions on how to use this weekly email. In a nutshell, you scan the list, pick a topic and start a conversation.
If you’re not sure how to get the ball rolling, trying picking one topic and asking a yes/no question. For example:
Don’t be afraid of yes/no questions, they’ll help you get to a compatible conversation topic faster. Plus, when you engage with a sports fan they’ll fill in a lot of the blanks in the conversation.
Which one of these will you use this week?
The Seahawks closed out their season yesterday… and then depression set in.
I quote that line from Stripes somewhat jokingly at the end of football season every year. I get grumpy when the season ends. I miss practices, game day, game prep, my guys and my colleagues.
All I want to do is be grouchy for a couple days before I regroup and start looking ahead.
What I don’t want are fans trying to make me feel better by saying “at least baseball season is just around the corner.” I’m not looking for a silver lining. I’m not interested in talking about baseball in January and I don’t care that you’re excited about baseball season.
That might sound harsh, but this is a bigger conversation skill that sports can help you practice – empathy. Letting someone feel their feelings without jumping in with your own. Allowing someone to feel frustrated, disappointed, upset or sad without offering a reason they shouldn’t be. It...
Establish relationships before you need them.
Practice your conversation skills before they’re necessary.
It’s easy to focus on productivity and the need to get things done heading into a new year and coming off the holiday break. Being productive doesn’t just mean powering through tasks. Don’t overlook the impact other people have on your ability to get things done. The relationships you build (or don’t) affect your productivity. Its why small talk is important and something to prioritize.
Be intentional about striking up conversations with colleagues, clients and employees. If you’re looking for things to talk about these sports headlines can help.
Sports is always my go-to conversation starter. Even if I don’t know if I’m talking to a sports fan. I know that uncertainty can make some fans uncomfortable, but sports is truly one of the most efficient ways to spark small talk because the answer doesn’t matter nearly as much as the clarity it provides.
If I lead with “Did you see the game last night?” I know I’m going to get one of two answers, and quite honestly I don’t care which one it is. If the answer is “Yes” I know I can follow up with another sports question or a question about the game. If the answer is “No” I can ask something like, “What did you have going on last night?” And now I’m into a conversation without playing 20 questions or asking a handful of questions while trying to find something meaningful. Using sports as a starting point made it easier to make a connection and have a productive exchange.