Elizabeth Renzetti, a journalist in The Globe and Mail wrote when watching the line ups for the Apple iPhone 6 that “many people were on their phones but no one was actually talking” (September 22, 2014). “Phones are not made for speaking anymore. In the Wall Street Journal it was reported that companies have to train employees how to use the phone” to talk to clients!

FOUR components of a balanced and coherent conversation:

  1. Talking:

  • Use clear speech, no mumbling

  • Infuse energy and show interest

  • Use gestures to reinforce your messages

  • Ensure good eye contact

  • Learn how to start a conversation

  1. Asking:

  • Take turns talking,

  • Learn how to maintain a conversation and stay on topic

  • Add a comment and ask a relevant question

  1. Listening:

  • Attend to the verbal and non-verbal messages that the speaker is giving

  • Show you are really listening with your eyes and body.

  • Forget yourself and really listen to the other

  1. Thinking:

  • Focus on what the other person is saying and not just on what you want to say.

  • Remember key points and add an open-ended question or a contingent relevant comment.

  • Be comfortable with silences. They are chances to think, respond or naturally end the dialogue.

  • Learn how to end a conversation and make the person want to talk to you again.