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How to Start and Make a Conversation: How to Talk to Anyone in 30 Seconds or Less Paperback – January 25, 2010


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Atlantic Publishing Group Inc. (January 25, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1601383835
  • ISBN-13: 978-1601383839
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 6 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #780,714 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

As our knowledge of human interaction continues to expand, we are realising more and more about how different elements of our behaviour influence others, and how important these factors are in maintaining our quality of life. My own research into how the sound of the voice influences others perceptions of your personality has revealed how just one element of communication, your voice quality, can impact on what people think of you. As a speech language pathologist, voice specialist, academic and researcher, I am impressed by the depth and scope of this book in considering the large number of elements that contribute to successful conversation. This is a great resource not only for those wanting to impress and shine in corporate or romantic encounters. It is also a wonderful resource for people from different cultures who lack confidence or feel unsure about the rules of interaction in a westernised culture. It encompasses much of the current information and common understanding of conversational etiquette in the twenty-first century. This book is a must read for all those who wish to empower themselves in their lives by connecting with others. --Cate Madill, PhD, BAppSc (Hons), BA(Hons), CPSP Voice Specialist, Speech-Language Pathologist Cate Madill Voice and Speech

As a speech language pathologist who has been in the field for ten years, I am pleased to write a foreword to How to Start and Make a Conversation: How to Talk to Anyone in 30 Seconds or Less. The art of conversation has been a strong interest of mine since I began my studies as a speech pathologist. In my second year of graduate school, I very quickly discovered how truly challenging it is to be an effective communicator. Learning about nonverbal communication and how individuals utilize language to influence others or to convey a certain message has fascinated me during my entire career. Participating in a conversation has been one of the problem areas I have seen and worked with in many children and adults. We have addressed areas such as greetings, initiation, and termination of a conversation, as well as non-verbal communication skills. As most know, first impressions are extremely important and Chris Gottschalk s How to Start and Make a Conversation shows readers the importance of interpreting body language, using that information to make a great first impression, adjusting one s own body language, and choosing appropriate topics to discuss. Gottschalk thoroughly explains why we, as humans, engage in communication. Abraham Maslow s Hierarchy of Needs and various sociological theories are expressed in an organized and concise manner. The theories and personality types described will help the reader understand unique needs for each individual type, and it will also help readers define themselves. How to Start and Make a Conversation provides detailed case studies of professionals and individuals who describe real-world accounts of struggles and successes in communication. The cases outline practical tips, including joining a conversation, overcoming common conversation barriers, and initiating conversation based on similar interests. Gottschalk provides strategies for unique situations that are challenging for many people, including speaking with someone who uses English as a second language. Gottschalk also includes an important chapter on Internet etiquette ( Netiquette ) and how to use information from online to help face-to-face communication. Social Web sites and online communication have become prevalent, and knowing how to properly act online and use this new information will benefit those hoping to enhance conversation and business networking skills. As a speech language pathologist, I found the information in this book to be extremely helpful. I believe it will be a great tool to help enhance anyone s personal and professional conversation skills! --Deanna Anderson, M.Ed., CCC/SLP

About the Author

M.Ed., CCC/SLP Speech Language Pathologist


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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By S Sanford on March 12, 2010
Format: Paperback
Growing up painfully shy I understand how intimidating starting a conversation can be. Any sort of public speaking, even to a small number of people, was torture for me, and I am not alone. In a poll discussed in this book, people choose public speaking as their number one fear while dying was number six. Wow! People would rather die than speak in public. Well, I can pretty much guarantee you that after reading this book that fear will have vanished. In this book you will come to understand that once you are armed with knowledge and insight into why speaking is so fearful, and also why it is so important, it will no longer be something to dread. Starting a conversation will be a welcome challenge. This book is about more than just starting a conversation; it is about understanding communication. It is also reassuring and insightful. Mr. Gottschalk explains the psychological need for communicating stating that, "Communication with other people is vital for mental, as well as physical health." He never makes the reader feel at fault for being shy; instead he provides incisive information and support that is needed to get over the limitations that keep many of us from carrying on a conversation. If you thought that with all the communication we now do via computer and electronic devices, that speaking is less important, think again. Face-to-face communication is still the most important way to communicate. And so much of this communication is non-verbal. It is communicated in body language and Mr. Gottschalk takes the time in this book to explain Body Language and Specifics of Body Language. What interesting and perceptive chapters they are!Read more ›
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Heath Gordon on March 17, 2010
Format: Paperback
Conversation is a skill that, in this modern era, many of have lost. It can sometimes be easier to send e-mails or make friends on the Internet via Facebook or MySpace. However, when we spend more time doing this, we forget simple conversation skills. This can impact both our personal and professional lives. Gottschalk, citing scientific studies, tells us why these skills are important, and then teaches you how you can develop your skills so you can become an expert conversationalist.
There is more to conversation than being able to talk. Gottschalk shows both the verbal and nonverbal cues that are necessary to making and beginning conversation. We all know how hard it is to go up to someone at a party. Gottschalk teaches us to analyze the crowd to figure out which people would be the most receptive at a party. Then he goes on to teach you not only how to initiate that conversation, but to keep it interesting, and, if everything goes well, to turn that one conversation into a lasting friendship.

Conversation is important in personal development, but it is crucial to being successful in the business world. You need to be able to make conversation if you want to convince your boss you deserve a promotion or if you want to network at the next convention you attend.

What I liked about this book is how it breaks down every aspect of conversation. He introduces each topic, tells you how its important, and then shows you how you can incorporate it into every new potential conversation you run into. Not only that, but he gives examples of conversations showcasing these skills. If you use a new skill every time you strike it up with someone, then you will be an expert conversationalist in no time.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By V. Consoli on August 8, 2012
Format: Paperback
I was a bit disappointed with this book. Let's just say the title itself is misleading. I have read similar books that were much more helpful in actually getting you to "start a conversation in 30 seconds of less". This book gives you very little to go on as far as actually striking up conversations. However, it does have a lot of interesting sections on general communication, such as body language, personality types (as an INFP I was very pleased to see MBTI types mentioned) and just general types of conversation. I found it to be more of a book about conversation style and communication types than actually what the title described. This book will not actually help you starts a conversation in 30 seconds or less, especially if you are an introvert like I am.
Overall it is not a bad book, the title is a bit misleading. I also found it to be a bit wordy in parts. If you want to read about human communication, this book is a fine starting point, it touches on a lot of areas, even if just briefly.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By June Coan on May 7, 2010
Format: Paperback
"How to Start and Make a Conversation" is a great book for those who may lack self confidence or want to freshen up on their talking skills. The book gives details on how to start a conversation, hold the conversation, and how to get out of a bad conversation. It also delves into how body language plays a factor in communication, as well as what countries may consider body language differently than we do.
The book shows examples and uses case studies to demonstrate specific situations. For example, the book tells you how to differentiate between being nervous to just being someone who overpowers the conversation. The Myer-Briggs test shows that there are sixteen personality types, and even if two people are introverted, there are other qualities that within the test that can make them incompatible or personalities can conflict.
This book not only shows you how to start a conversation, but breaks it down to normal social settings, workplace, dating, and conferences for example. Each situation is different, plus you may be dealing with multiple people in one situation, but just one or two people in the next situation. It tells you how to digress from a conversation with a person that is boring without being rude, or how your body language can tell someone to back off. "How to Start and Make a Conversation" takes you through a journey that can improve your social speaking skills and make you feel confident in any situation by the time you are done reading it.
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