How To Never Have A Bad Interaction

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• Most people fail to be charming in conversations because they misunderstand what it really means to be charming. But anyone can build their charisma by practicing a few concrete skills.

• Firstly, use mirroring to signal connection and understanding. Whether it’s verbally, nonverbally, or even emotionally, mirroring can build rapport between you and the other person.

• Use Albrecht’s “rule of three” to help you have more balanced conversations, i.e. ones where you do enough listening. What you say can either be a Declarative (facts or opinion being stated as facts), Questions, or Qualifiers (or “softeners”). The rule is not to have more than three declaratives in a row – instead, use a question or softener to keep things balanced.

• Similarly, the ARE method is a helpful tool to help you nail small talk easily. It stands for Anchor, Reveal, and Encourage. First, identify a shared experience, then reveal something about yourself connected to that anchor, then finally encourage the other person to share, too.

• With small talk topics, remember the acronym FORM: Family, Occupation, Recreation (hobbies and interests), and Motivation (goals).

• You can avoid overly long-winded responses by remembering the 1 minute traffic light rule. The first 30 seconds or so is a green light to speak as you will, the next 30 seconds is an orange light – watch out for waning interest – and beyond a minute is a red light, where you will likely lose your listener’s attention. Keep it short!

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