On Small Talk
I am not an outgoing person. I’ve always hated small talk; I was an awkward, serious kid who wasn’t good at it and didn’t care for superficiality.
That started changing when I started my own business practicing law after law school. I began to have a different mindset. I had to deal with clients and professionals regularly—people I didn’t know personally but had to do business with. It was important to put them at ease, show a little humor, and reassure them that I am generally a pleasant person.
So I got better at small talk.
I get it now. It’s really about putting people at ease; about starting off with a positive interaction, however small.
I’m still awkward. My small talk game is basic. But I try, and I think it works. In fact, one of my co-workers recently told me I’m good with people. Five years ago, I would never have thought someone would say that about me.
Editing Thought of the Day
Maybe with 280 characters available, Twitter will finally include proper punctuation.
- Twitter increased its character limit from 140 to 280 a little while ago, and a lot of users decried the change—including Kevin O’Keefe, the lawyering world’s social media evangelist. But now he admits he was wrong.
- A new app called Groupy has just been released for Windows. It adds tabs to every application. I haven’t tried it, but it looks useful. It’s such a good idea, in fact, that Microsoft is already developing its own (worse) version.