From global dialogues engaging thousands, to tete-a tetes, to everything in between, I’ve got the greatest gig in the world: I get paid to engage the world’s greatest business and thought leaders in conversation. Significant conversation. I do a lot of other stuff, too, but basically I’m obsessed with conversation.
I’ve been asked to share my views on the power of conversation—especially as it’s exemplified in word of mouth marketing techniques. My preference is the gold standard of conversation” the kind of face to face, one-on-one dialogue that’s getting increasingly rare.
If you think about it, face to face conversation is the new luxury.
It’s so easy to “communicate” through technology-assisted means that some of us have trouble remembering the last truly fascinating, life-changing conversation we’ve had.
So there’s something a bit weird about my writing a blog about the most memorable conversations I’ve had. But I’m doing it to stir your appetite for significant conversation. We’ll share some of the remarkable conversations I’ve been privileged to have with people all over the world. Some are extraordinary leaders in business and public life; others just ordinary folks with extraordinary things to say. And I’ll throw in some conversational tips along the way, as well as comments from other people on the subject of talk, conversation…even just plain gab.
Whichever way you like it, I hope you’ll find inspiration here to go off and have a scintillating conversation of your own.
I’ll give you recommendations for initiating meaningful conversation as well as for places and activities that are worth talking about. Let me know what you find especially provocative or fascinating or enlightening or all the above. And, of course, tell me if any of this is wrong-headed, stupid, arbitrary or, worst of all, boring.
Communication is the most important thing between human beings, no matter what form it may come in. I am realizing this being in a completely new country and city where I am constantly being exposed to friendly, open conversation: New York City.
My name is Julia, and I am doing an internship at Wf360, a marketing company located in NYC. I am 24 years old and from Nuremberg, Germany, a town near Munich. This is my third time experiencing New York and I simply love it. This city is so inspiring to me. So much that after being here for about 2 months I am feeling depressed at the idea of going back to Germany soon.
Most of the people in the United States, especially in New York are so open and speak whatever is on his or her mind. While walking through the streets, you can always find a helpful person or someone willing to answer a question you may have. For example, whenever I am lost or have other questions, I ALWAYS am able to find a stranger that is willing to help me. In Germany, this is definitely not the case. They don't really care about others they don't know and therefore are unwilling to help out, especially if it is a stranger. Of course, I like Germany because I have been there all my life with my family and friends but honestly I prefer New York or London because of its openness.
Since my first visit to NYC in 1998, I truly fell in love with this city. Now it's is my third time and I can't get enough of it. All the flashing lights, all the skyscrapers, all of the opportunities and all of the different cultures just fascinate me a lot! From my experiences, all the people are so kind and I’ve never had any problems with anybody here. It's great that people try to help you and I’ve made some great friendships in my short time.
That's another thing about NYC. It's very easy to meet new people, it seems like I make 5 new "friends" every single day. Obviously, most of those friendships are superficial and more like acquaintances, but still for someone who likes to meet new people, I am fascinated.
On the topic of why NYC strikes me and my personality, the free spirited aspect of this city really allows for compliments. Compliments from strangers, friends, whoever and wherever. I'm a young, open minded woman and if I see someone who dresses well I will always speak my mind and let them know. That's not at all common in Germany but in NYC I see it happening all the time! I love the fact that people are not jealous or judge you. Unfortunately, It’s quite the contrary in Germany. If someone doesn’t like anything about someone else’s look, they will make jokes or pass judgment. I could never understand that. Why can’t people accept the fact that someone is different from them, if it’s about their clothes, the way they look, or the way they think? In NYC I can really be who I am and not worry about anything. That expression “if you have nothing nice to say, don’t say anything at all” seems to apply to experience in NYC.
As mentioned earlier in my post, I am all about communication and expression and love that New York City allows me to do that openly and without judgment. Just being in this city has allowed me to go up to strangers, make new friends, and create wonderful experiences. New York, I love that you allow me to communicate and converse with many different kinds of people. Something I would have never been able to do in my home country, Germany. Maybe I can bring a small percentage of that back with my when I return so that all the young people can embrace the ability to communicate freely.