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How to talk to people you do not know

How to talk to people you do not know

We all know how important it is to network. Most people find a job through networking. But, it is very hard to talk to people we do not know. Usually, the first question asked is, "What do you do?" Thankfully, David Burkus, in a Harvard Business Review article, gives us "8 Questions to Ask Someone Other Than What Do You Do?".

  1. What excites you right now?
  2. What are you looking forward to?
  3. What’s the best thing that happened to you this year?
  4. Where did you grow up?
  5. What do you do for fun?
  6. Who is your favorite superhero?
  7. Is there a charitable cause you support? 
  8. What’s the most important thing I should know about you?

Burkus reminds us to ask open-ended questions. Those are questions that do not have a yes or no answer, but ones on which respondents can elaborate.

  • What questions do you use to talk to people you do not know?
  • Which of the 8 questions above will you start using? Why?

 Photo credit: opensourceway on / CC BY-SA