Again, small talk kick-starts the networking process. Small talk, however, is about getting the other person talking. This begs the question: What are good questions to ask in this process?
There is no magic. Planning, however, is paramount. Be like an attorney – prepare your questions before you ask them. In other words, have a small handful of questions ready to go. Each of these relates to the person’s life professionally or personally … Or something about their past.
From there, allow the conversation to take itself wherever. A few of these questions could include…
• What do you do? How long have you been doing it? How did you become interested in that?
• What are some of the projects or assignments you are currently working on?
• Are you from this area?
Yes – What part?
No – What brought you here?
• Outside of work, what occupies you? How did you become interested in that?
• What are some business or community organizations you are involved with?
These will give you a start. From here you might want to formulate your own series of questions. Again, there is no magic. It is simply a matter of planning on how you will get and keep them talking.