In today’s world of texting and emojis, real-life conversations have slightly taken a back seat. Whether that’s a good thing or not, is debatable, and not the topic for this article.
This is article is about the FORD method- a simple technique that will help you start a conversation with her, him or anybody.
The FORD Method will help you kill awkward silences in the middle of conversations and start conversations with anyone- people of all ages, nationalities and beliefs.
Conversation is what helps us humans, exchange thoughts and ideas and that is precisely why it is a very important skill to have.
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The FORD Method:
The FORD Method is nothing but a list of four topics that you can talk about, with absolutely anyone. These are four things that everybody has- a family, an occupation, a recreation or two, and a dream.
Think about it. Everyone has a family. Everyone has an Occupation. Everyone has a hobby or recreation. And, everyone has dreams they want to fulfill.
FAMILY: Everyone has a family- some big, some nuclear. The point is, everyone has something to say about their father, mother, siblings, etc.
A family is something that is very close to our hearts and studies have shown that having a conversation about families instantly builds a stronger connection between the two people.
“So, you’re from France, right? Tell me something about your family there.”
“Are you living here all by yourself, or do you stay with your family?”
“That woman reminded me of my mother. Talking about family, why don’t you tell me something about yours?”
OCCUPATION: Everyone has a job, or at least, wants one.
45% of our time is spent either at school, or at work. It definitely is a big part of our lives. Knowing what someone does for a living, and how they feel about it, helps you understand a lot about them.
When meeting a stranger, talking about occupation is usually the best bet. They’re always going to have something to say.
“You seem like you’d make a good teacher. What do you do for a living?”
Just a simple “What’s your job?” works quite well.
RECREATION: Everyone has a hobby, and sometimes they’re very passionate about it. Talking about your hobbies usually results in an interesting continuous conversation.
Just start with a cliché “What do you like doing where you’re free?”.
How you follow up, is a lot more important. Let’s say they reply with a sport you’ve never heard of, or know nothing about. Here’s what you should say: “Oh, that’s interesting. I’ve always wanted to know more about x”. This way, you not only get them to tell you more about the sport, but also keep the conversation going. A similar follow up can be used to for the “What’s your job?” question.
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DREAMS: If you can get someone to share their dreams and aspiration, you’re either really close to him/ her, or you’re a pro at communication.
Once you get to know a person well, using the three topics above, try and hit the sweet spot. The reason why talking about dreams is really powerful, is because not a lot of people are able to pursue them, especially in today’s 9-5 culture.
When someone shares their dreams with you, and you reply expressing belief and motivate them. That’s it! You’ve built a relationship for life.
After you know what their hobby is, “That’s really cool, you like to draw. Ever thought of becoming an artist?” Questions like these pave the way to deeper conversations.
Look up at the sky and say, “Ever thought of doing something bigger than just a 9-5? What’s your biggest dream?”
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