To mingle with ease, look for opportunities to build on what others say. Don’t impose your will; instead, let them steer the conversation and reinforce key points.
Follow these steps to make strangers feel comfortable and eager to learn more about you:
Ask “wraparound questions.” Pose clarifying questions that encourage others to elaborate on what they just said. But make sure to wrap your inquiries with biographical tidbits. Example: “Do you enjoy working with end customers? I certainly did in my three years as a customer-service rep.”
Affirm and agree. Look for opportunities to nod your head and say, “Yes, that’s what I’ve found as well.” That’s better than nullifying what you hear or trying to top it by trumpeting your experience.