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Small talk

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After introducing yourself, you should then move onto some small talk. In other words, make some light conversation. Small talk has two advantages; firstly, you can deepen your relationship and secondly, you are able to adjust to your partners communication style before moving onto business.

 

What you talk about depends on the occasion. For example, supposing somebody is meeting you from overseas at your office for the first time, please put the following topics into two groups, suitable and unsuitable:

 

Family

Hobbies

Salary

Religion

 

In fact, all these topics are potentially unsuitable. When you do not know the person, the best small talk topics are safe and universal. That means asking about family matters runs the risk of alienating the single and recently separated. Hobbies are often personal affairs and not widely shared. Suitable topics, however, would include the weather, hometown, your journey to the location, previous experience in the country being visited and any freetime plans in the visitor’s schedule.

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