- The Flooding Smile
Don’t smile immediately. Look at a person face for a second. Pause. Soak in their persona. Let a big, warm, responsive smile flood over my face. Spilt-second delay convinces people my flooding smile is genuine and exclusive for them.
- Sticky Eyes
Pretend my eyes are glued to the lips of person speaking. If I must look away, do so slowly.
- Epoxy Eyes
No matter who’s talking, keep looking at the person I want to make impact.
- Chest up, shoulders back
Perfect posture is the key to appear confident.
- Big-Baby Pivot
Treat people as big babies “ I think you are very, very special! “
- Hello Old Friend
Treat people as my old long-lost friends.
- Stop Fidgeting
Let my nose itch, my ear tingle, my foot prickle. Do not fidget, wiggle, twitch, squirm or scratch. Keep my hands away from my face.
- Dual Sense
Express myself and keep an eye on how my listener is reacting.
- Visualize the Scene
Visualize myself walking around with chest up, shoulders back, shaking hands, flooding smile, stick eyes and dual sense. Do so in a quiet and tranquil environment. Noisy and distracting places do not work.
- Match mood
Match the mood and tone of people, if even for a moment.
- Empathy and Passion over Content
No matter how smart the content, empathetic and passionate delivery makes me sound exciting.
- Always wear “What’s that’?
Whenever I go, wear something strange, unusual that will make people approach “I couldn’t help but notice your … What’s that?’
- Ask “Who’s that?”
If I don’t know someone, approach the host and ask for introduction or a few facts to turn into icebreaker.
- Eavesdrop In
If the person is in a group conversation and I cannot find a host, stand near them and eavesdrop. Wait for the signal to jump in with Excuse me, I couldn’t help but overhear…
- Never Naked City
Don’t give direct answer on where I am from. Give some clever response ‘I’m from the land of pagodas.’
- Never Naked Job
Don’t give direct answer on what I do. Give some clever response ‘I help people leverage technology in business and their personal lives’.
- Never Naked Introduction
Don’t let the people figure out each other. It’s my job to pave a road for their conversation.
- Word Detective
Listen to every word for clues to their preferred topics.
- Put them in Limelight
The longer I keep the spotlight away from me, the more interesting people find me.
Simply repeat last few words people say (especially when the conversation is dying)
Shine the spotlight on people in front of crowds. Ask them to tell about the time they performed well.
- Hide Negative in the Closet
Save negativity for later. Accentuate the positives when I first meet people.
- Go Grab News
Don’t leave for party or small talks without scanning news first.
- Don’t ask ‘What do you do?’
It’s a cliche. Instead ask, ‘How do you spend most of your time?’
- Dynamic Resume
Just as I tweak my resume for different jobs, tweak my verbal resume for different contexts.
- Personal Thesaurus
Look up some common words I use everyday. Swap with rich, creative and powerful vocabs.
- Kill ‘Me Too!’
The longer I wait to reveal the similarity the more moved and impressed the person will be. Don’t wait too long as well, else I can appear as tricky.
‘You’ is more powerful and striking than same 3-lettered word ‘Sex’. Whenever, I say ‘you’ it pushes the pride button of the people. Could you please tell me where the ATM is?
- Exclusive Smile
Adjust the intensity of my smile. Reserve big smile for big people.
- Avoid Cliche
Especially when chatting with big winners.
- Make ‘em Rhyme, Clever, Funny
Employ different tones, pace and expressions. Harness the power of pauses (silence).
- Call a Spade a Spade
Don’t hide behind euphemisms. Call a circle a circle. Big winners speak plain and clear.
- Trash Teasing
Avoid humor that comes with someone’s expense.
- See through Their Eyes
Deliver the news considering how they will receive it, not how I feel about it.
- Dodge Unwelcomed Questions
Repeat the same answer in same tone, when I feel the question is unwelcomed or invasive. Hearing the same response will usually stop the rude interrogator.
- Don’t compliment someone’s work.
Instead say how much pleasure or insight it gave me.
- Never Naked Thank you.
Always be specific when thanking someone. Thank you for your time. Thank you for asking. Thank you for meeting me.
- Try Something New
Once a month, try new sport, go to an exhibition, hear a lecture on topic out of my field. Overtime I will accumulate the lingo across various fields.
- Ask Insider Questions
Simply ask a friend who speaks the lingo of the crowd to teach me opening questions. Dentists for example ask each other, are you following general practice or specialization?
- Speak Insider Language
When buying diamond, don’t say show me something better. Say show me something ‘finer’.
- Read Hobby / Profession Magazines
Scan interview sections. I will sound more like an insider.
- Read Dos and Taboos
Before I even land a toe in foreign soil, read dos and don’ts of the country.
- Buff for Bargains
Find several vendors, learn from all. Buy from one. Arm myself with insider language.
- Be a Copycat
Imagine the person as a dance instructor. Follow their movements.
- Echo words
Repeat their choice of nouns, verbs, prepositions, adjectives and echo them back.
- Potent Imaging
Evoke people interests and lifestyles. Give analogies around them. If the person is pilot, say ‘take off’. If the person loves gardening, say ‘sow the seeds for success’.
- Employ Empathizers
Don’t just say verbal nods (um-huh, umm). Say I see what you mean. That’s a lovely thing to say.
- Employ Anatomical Empathizers
Take one step further. For visual people, say It seems like… For auditory people, say It sounds like … For gut people, say It feels like …
Create sensation of intimacy using the words ‘we, our, us’
- Instant History
Recall some special moment I shared with the person. Find a few words to make them laugh, smile and share the feelings we two felt. Tip – Write down the person’s value, favorite item, hobby, anything that makes them distinct at the back of their business cards.
- Compliment so he overhears
A compliment that he receives is never as exciting as the one he overhears. Share the good things about him with his friends, families, colleagues.
- Carry Compliments
Nobody loves the pigeon who carries bad news. Always carry and love the pigeon who spreads positive thoughts and good news.
- Implied Magnificence
Indirectly praise the person so they don’t feel flattered.
- Compliment but be stealth
Stealthily sneak praise into the part of the conversation. Don’t try to quiz later on.
- Killer Compliment
Compliment his distinct, specific and attractive quality he or she has.
- Always Compliment
Don’t let them think Haven’t I been good to you lately? Always affirm and appreciate their work by saying Nice job! Well done! Cool!
- Compliment Straightaway
Don’t wait for the right time. Compliment as fast as possible.
- Take Compliments Well
Don’t reject the compliment. Take it well so the other person will feel welcomed to praise more. Say That’s very kind of you.
- Tomstone Game
Ask people what would they like to be engraved on their tombstone. Bury it into my memory and wait until the right moment to say I appreciate you (for their values, actions said earlier).
- Talking Gestures
When on the line, turn smiles into sound, nods into noise.
- Name Shower
A person’s name is the sweetest voice to that person. Shower the name when talking on phone. In person, use it sparingly to avoid becoming awkward.
- Smile before the Call
Let a huge smile of happiness engulf my entire face and spill over into my voice.
- Sneaky Screen
Before putting someone through, sneakily screen the caller. Oh yes I’ll put you right through. May I tell her who’s calling?
- Salute the Spouse and Secretary
Anyone who is close enough to answer the phone of CEO is close enough to influence his decisions.
- What Color is Your Time?
What Color is Your Time? Is another creative, simple way to ask “Is this a good time for you to talk?”
- Constantly change Auto-replies
No jokes. No Music. No inspirational quotes. No boasts. No bells nor whistles. Change it every day. Doesn’t have to be flawless. But be authentic and lively.
- 10s Audition
Prove I’m worthy of a callback in first 10 seconds of my message.
- Is he In?
In some cases, forget “Hi, is Bob Smith here, is he in?”. Just imply that I’m his close friend by saying “Hi, is he in?”
- I Hear Your Other Line
I hear your other line (dog barking, baby crying, spouse calling), ask whether the person has to attend. Whether he needs or not, he will appreciate me for asking.
- Instant Replay
Record all business conversations to listen to them again. There will always be subtleties I missed the first time.
- Much or Mingle
Eat before going to parties. Come to eat or come to talk, don’t do both.
- Rubberneck the Room
When arriving at the party, stop at the doorway. Then s-l-o-w-l-y survey the situation with my eyes travelling back and forth.
- Choose, don’t just be chosen
Always go around and explore every face in the room. Capture whoever or whatever I want in my life.
- Open Body Language
Use my wrists and palms to say I have nothing to like. Come talk to me. I accept you and what you’re saying
Like ATC, track even the tiniest details of the conversation. When I invoke the last major or minor event in anyone’s life, it creates a powerful sense of intimacy.
- Business Card Dossier
On the back of a person’s business card, write notes to remind the conversation; his favorite restaurant, sport, movie drink who he admires where he grew up a joke he told. Refer to the note in my next conversation.
- Eyeball Selling
Human body is 24/7 broadcasting station signalling You thrill me You bore me I love that aspect of your product. Use my eyes as a cameras to pick up all these signals.
- See No Bloopers Hear No Bloopers
Ignore minor spills, slips, fumbles. Big winners never gape at another’s accidental flaws.
- Lend a Helping Tongue
When someone’s interrupted, help him get back to his story Now please get back to your story. So what happened after…
- Make WIFFM WIIFY Obvious
Reveal what’s in it for me as well as the other person. Divulge the respective benefits.
- Let Them Savor the Favor
Let the relish the joy of his or her favor before I make them pay the pier (pay the cost of his favor).
- Delay before asking for Reciprocity
If someone owes me something, wait a suitable amount of time before asking them to pay back.
- Let Enemies be Friends at Parties
Leave tough talk for tougher settings. Even when sitting next to my enemies at the table, smile and nod.
- No Tough business at the Table
When eating, it’s OK to brainstorm and discuss the positive side of business. Just no tough business.
- No Serious business at Chance Encounters
Chance encounters are for chit chat. Keep the melody of my unexpected meeting sweet and light.
- Empty Their Tanks
Let people empty their feelings first. Their inner noise has to be emptied first before they start receiving my message.
- Echo the Emo.
Let them emote. Hear their facts but empathize like mad with their emotions.
- My Mistake, Your Gain
What I could do for this suffering soul so he or she will be delighted I made the mistake?
- Leave an Escape Hatch
Whenever you catch someone lying, flinching, exaggerating, distorting, or deceiving, don’t catch or correct the culprit, unless it’s my responsibility.
- Forward the compliments to their bosses
The surefire way to make people care enough is to spread their good works to their bosses.
- Lead the Listeners
No matter how big the cat is behind the podium, crouched inside is a little scardy-cat who is anxious about social acceptance. Lead the listeners in a positive reaction. Be the first to applaud or publicly commend the man or woman I agree with or want favors from.
- Courtesy Scorecards
Numbers continually fluctuate but one rule remains. Not keeping an eye on the courtesy scorecard will get me thrown out of the game. Permanently.