How to get to know someone better

How to get to know someone better

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How to get to know someone better

There is an old adage that says one should seek to understand before seeking to be understood. I say, we have two ears and only one mouth for a reason — because we need to listen twice as much as we speak.

Communication is the most important skill a human can develop — and this is doubly true for leaders. But listening isn’t haphazard. You are likely interested in listening for specific information. This means that in order to communicate well, you need to ask the right question and ask it at the right time. The wrong question is almost guaranteed to generate the wrong answer. The right question asked at the wrong time — in the wrong context, while there are pressing distractions, asked of the wrong person — is equally useless.

Here are the steps I employ when I am ready to listen and need specific information.

1. Avoid asking rhetorical questions.

A rhetorical question is a figure of speech in the form of a question. They are typically asked in order to make a point rather than to elicit an answer. Such questions are not really questions but are designed to force someone into a specific response. This gets you nowhere.

2. Ask friendly, clarifying questions.

A good question lets you better understand the situation, and this requires not putting people on the defensive. Demeaning a person rarely produces honest feedback.

3. Don’t set traps.

Don’t put the listener on the spot. There is an old joke where a constituent asked his senator if he had quit beating his wife. The question was designed to force a denial of one type or another not to provide meaningful information. Articulate your questions without erecting a box around them.

4. Ask open-ended questions.

Few questions can be correctly answered with yes / no, A / B, forward / backward. Binary replies are often invalid. It is better to ask an open-ended question — one without artificial bounds — and to give the respondent time to answer with the appropriate level of detail and nuance. Open-ended questions also allow the listener greater comfort with the communication, since they are not forced to make incomplete choices.

5. Be grateful.

Thank the person for their response. After all, you will likely want their insights again.

6. Avoid stress.

Answers provided during tense situations are often poor ones. If the situation is tense but not an emergency, then waiting a short time improves the odds of a quality answer, since the respondent will have time and focus to contemplate.

7. Avoid being too direct.

Even if you are trying to get a specific answer, being too direct and too specific can lead to rigid answers. Instead of, “Should we create product A or B?” ask, “What product is the market asking for, and how do our options meet that demand?”

8. Silence is golden.

Be a willing listener. Even when the other person is not talking, communication is still active. Take a breather between questions to give you and the other person time to decompress. This makes your communications less like an interrogation, even if it is a fact-finding mission.

Most of all, ask questions as you would like to be asked them. Take that brief second to think about how you would answer the question you are about to ask, and if you feel uncomfortable, then you need to rephrase it.

How to get to know someone better

How to get to know someone better

Jasper is our expert conversationalist and wordsmith. He loves coming up with questions, jokes, and topics designed to create natural conversation. His work has been featured on Marriage.com, iHeart Media, Elite Dai .
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How to get to know someone better

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Knowing how to get to know someone is one of those things that seems simple on paper, but is often surprisingly difficult.

But why is that?

Well, getting to know someone is often easier said than done. Connecting on a surface level is a breeze – you do it with the person who serves your coffee or rings up your groceries all the time. Moving beyond the small talk, and into the get to know you questions and tactics, is what takes guts, effort, and a little know how.

Whether you’re pursuing a romance, a friendship, or a business relationship, the way that you approach the person makes all of the difference in the world.

Context is everything. There’s no universal one-size-fits-all approach to getting to know someone. These steps will dramatically help, but it’s up to you to know how to adapt your strategy and change gears on the fly.

Here are 13 steps to get to know someone:

1. Start with a Smile

How to get to know someone better

via: Unsplash / Brooke Cagle

I know, it seems too simple. but a smile goes a long way!

While it may take some time for someone to fully warm up to you, simply looking someone in the eye and smiling is the first step to forming a connection. And after all, getting to know a new person is fun.

The initial smile sets the tone for the coming conversation. A person is much more likely to be willing to open up if the mood is lighthearted and pressure-free. Nobody wants to feel like they’re being grilled.

2. Engage in Small Talk

How to get to know someone better

via: Unsplash / Crew

Before you start getting too deep, just scratch the surface with some small talk. Your mutual surroundings should provide adequate inspiration. Talking about the weather is always an easy one. If you’re inside, you could remark on the décor.

This initial conversation is just to help the other person to feel more comfortable around you. It helps both of you to get to know each other’s mannerisms. Don’t over analyze it too much though – a few questions and answers back and forth is all it takes to open up the lines of communication.

Once you feel comfortable moving on to slightly more in-depth topics, you can use conversation starters to help the other person open up further.

3. Use Getting to Know You Conversation Starters

How to get to know someone better

via: Depositphotos / photography33

This is probably the most important step in knowing how to get to know someone:

The art of starting a conversation requires that you know your audience. Asking a potential employee about his pets would probably come off a bit weird. On the other hand, puppies and kittens make an easy, lighthearted conversation topic on a first date.

Good conversation starters are that middle ground between small talk and getting to know you questions that are a bit more personal. For example, you could ask what a person did over the weekend, or what kind of music they listen to.

These conversation starters help you to understand the person’s basic interests and hobbies. They’re not meant to be deep. At the same time, you wouldn’t typically use these conversation starters with a complete stranger, right? By asking them, you’re subtly moving the relationship forward.

Here are some of our favorite conversation starters:

  • When you were a kid, what movie did you watch constantly?
  • If you could go on a cross country road trip with a famous person, dead or alive, who would it be?
  • If you could only eat at one restaurant for the rest of your life, which would it be?
  • Morning person or night owl?
  • Aside from TV/reading, what’s your favorite indoor activity?

Important:

The goal of a conversation starter is to initiate a conversation. Do not just ask a question, listen to the answer, and then ask another question! These are conversation starters, not interview questions.

Allow the answers to lead into other topics naturally. Listen to the other person, but don’t forget to talk about yourself too. Find that balance.

4. Use Getting to Know You Questions

How to get to know someone better

via: Depositphotos / minervastock

By now you should feel comfortable chatting with each other. Getting to know you questions help you to get a little more personal while still keeping things fun and casual.

The questions you ask are going to depend on who you’re talking to and what your goals are. Again, context is everything.

If you’re hanging out with a new friend, then you may want to use questions to ask to get to know a guy. If you’re on a date, questions to ask to get to know a girl may be more appropriate. When in doubt, it’s hard to go wrong with funny getting to know you questions.

Here are some questions to get you started:

For guys:

  • What’s your all-time favorite movie?
  • What do you think the absolute coolest hobby out there is?
  • Past or present, who’s your favorite athlete?
  • What’s your sport?
  • What do you think is the greatest invention of all time?

For girls:

  • Cats or dogs?
  • Where do you want to travel next?
  • What activity/hobby makes you the happiest?
  • What’s on the top of your bucket list?
  • What would her dream house be like?

Funny:

  • What is your most unusual talent?
  • What’s the funniest thing you’ve seen a kid do?
  • What’s the most useless product around today?
  • If one animal was made the size of an elephant, which would be the scariest?
  • If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Bumble can take a lot of the pressure off meeting someone new by introducing you to tons of potential matches—but where you take it from there is all you. Those first conversations can provide great insight, helping you decipher whether the other person shares your values, wants the same thing from a match that you do, and even if they’ll be a fun date IRL. We asked experts for their tips on how to get to know someone better on Bumble and make the most out of your pre-date conversations.

Choose an original opener

So you’ve just made a new match and want to get the conversation started. Great! To skip the small talk, go beyond the “how’s your day?” opening line. Instead, Bela Gandhi, founder of Smart Dating Academy, recommends looking to their profile for first line inspiration. “Take the time to find something interesting to connect on or that you have in common,” she says. “Show some curiosity and ask a question about something the person has said or one of their photos.”

And if you don’t find anything in their profile that you can initially connect on, Gigi Engle, sexologist and author of All the F*cking Mistakes, says “to go funny and weird with questions. My personal favorite is, ‘What are your three favorite berries?’ Sometimes being silly can take some of the pressure off.” So remember, you can’t go wrong with a good ol’ fashioned “would you rather” (Be a mermaid or a centaur? Be able to read minds or have the power of invisibility?), and if you really want to see what they’re about, try asking them if they think a hot dog is a sandwich.

Go deeper with the standard questions

If you’re on the receiving end of a “how’s your day going,” you can still use that opener to get a more specific conversation started. “Say something like, ‘Not much, just watching It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, which I see from your profile that you’re a fan of, too. Who’s your favorite character and why?” suggests Engle. “Take the ‘what’s up’ and make it personal.”

The same thing goes for the typical biographical questions. Gandhi recommends that instead of asking something obvious like, “What do you do for work?,” go a step further by saying, “What do you love about what you do?” How they answer can tell you a lot about what what matters to them in ways that don’t always fit in a profile.

Make sure your profile shows who you are

It might seem like a no-brainer, but your profile isn’t the place to be coy. Give potential matches plenty to think about by uploading all six photos, adding Interest Badges, filling out the About Me section, and using all three Profile Prompts (more profile tips here). “By crafting your bio honestly, you can avoid wasting time with people with whom you have nothing in common,” says Dr. Wednesday Martin, social scientist and author of Untrue.

Making your profile true to you can show potential matches what you really value and what you’re looking for in a date. Do you high-tail it to a campground every chance you get? Say so! Are you a master chef in the kitchen? Put it in the profile. When you really show who you are, it becomes easier to weed out anyone who isn’t a match and connect with people who are interested in what you’re putting out there. Plus, it has the potential to lead to great conversations about the things that you and your match really care about.

Once the chat starts flowing, take note of your match’s energy

Sometimes the first chat is enough to show you that someone isn’t quite a fit—and that’s okay! The main reason for having these conversations in the first place is to figure out who you’d want to meet up with in person. According to Dr. Martin, if you’re on the fence about whether to keep the conversation going, start taking note of the other person’s vibe. “If someone is impatient or not understanding about wanting to get to know each other by messaging on the app and through text, I’d say it’s not a match,” she says. And notice how the other person reacts to your responses. “If someone seems dismissive of your interests or questions via messaging, they will likely be so IRL.” Sometimes how someone responds can be just as telling as what they’re saying.

Try out a phone or video call before meeting up

One of the greatest things about dating nowadays is that you don’t have to go from text chat to an in-person date right away. Bumble has built-in Video Chat and Voice Call features so you can have intermediate dates all from within the app itself. In fact, Gandhi actually recommends starting off with a short-and-sweet video or voice call before you make plans to meet up. That way, you can get a better sense of your match’s personality and if you two get along. It’s also a great opportunity to go deeper into the conversations that you were having on Bumble so that you can get to know each other better and decide if you want to go on a date.

There are a ton of great people on Bumble waiting to get to know you better, so remember these tips next time you match with someone!

Bumble can take a lot of the pressure off meeting someone new by introducing you to tons of potential matches—but where you take it from there is all you. Those first conversations can provide great insight, helping you decipher whether the other person shares your values, wants the same thing from a match that you do, and even if they’ll be a fun date IRL. We asked experts for their tips on how to get to know someone better on Bumble and make the most out of your pre-date conversations.

Choose an original opener

So you’ve just made a new match and want to get the conversation started. Great! To skip the small talk, go beyond the “how’s your day?” opening line. Instead, Bela Gandhi, founder of Smart Dating Academy, recommends looking to their profile for first line inspiration. “Take the time to find something interesting to connect on or that you have in common,” she says. “Show some curiosity and ask a question about something the person has said or one of their photos.”

And if you don’t find anything in their profile that you can initially connect on, Gigi Engle, sexologist and author of All the F*cking Mistakes, says “to go funny and weird with questions. My personal favorite is, ‘What are your three favorite berries?’ Sometimes being silly can take some of the pressure off.” So remember, you can’t go wrong with a good ol’ fashioned “would you rather” (Be a mermaid or a centaur? Be able to read minds or have the power of invisibility?), and if you really want to see what they’re about, try asking them if they think a hot dog is a sandwich.

Go deeper with the standard questions

If you’re on the receiving end of a “how’s your day going,” you can still use that opener to get a more specific conversation started. “Say something like, ‘Not much, just watching It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, which I see from your profile that you’re a fan of, too. Who’s your favorite character and why?” suggests Engle. “Take the ‘what’s up’ and make it personal.”

The same thing goes for the typical biographical questions. Gandhi recommends that instead of asking something obvious like, “What do you do for work?,” go a step further by saying, “What do you love about what you do?” How they answer can tell you a lot about what what matters to them in ways that don’t always fit in a profile.

Make sure your profile shows who you are

It might seem like a no-brainer, but your profile isn’t the place to be coy. Give potential matches plenty to think about by uploading all six photos, adding Interest Badges, filling out the About Me section, and using all three Profile Prompts (more profile tips here). “By crafting your bio honestly, you can avoid wasting time with people with whom you have nothing in common,” says Dr. Wednesday Martin, social scientist and author of Untrue.

Making your profile true to you can show potential matches what you really value and what you’re looking for in a date. Do you high-tail it to a campground every chance you get? Say so! Are you a master chef in the kitchen? Put it in the profile. When you really show who you are, it becomes easier to weed out anyone who isn’t a match and connect with people who are interested in what you’re putting out there. Plus, it has the potential to lead to great conversations about the things that you and your match really care about.

Once the chat starts flowing, take note of your match’s energy

Sometimes the first chat is enough to show you that someone isn’t quite a fit—and that’s okay! The main reason for having these conversations in the first place is to figure out who you’d want to meet up with in person. According to Dr. Martin, if you’re on the fence about whether to keep the conversation going, start taking note of the other person’s vibe. “If someone is impatient or not understanding about wanting to get to know each other by messaging on the app and through text, I’d say it’s not a match,” she says. And notice how the other person reacts to your responses. “If someone seems dismissive of your interests or questions via messaging, they will likely be so IRL.” Sometimes how someone responds can be just as telling as what they’re saying.

Try out a phone or video call before meeting up

One of the greatest things about dating nowadays is that you don’t have to go from text chat to an in-person date right away. Bumble has built-in Video Chat and Voice Call features so you can have intermediate dates all from within the app itself. In fact, Gandhi actually recommends starting off with a short-and-sweet video or voice call before you make plans to meet up. That way, you can get a better sense of your match’s personality and if you two get along. It’s also a great opportunity to go deeper into the conversations that you were having on Bumble so that you can get to know each other better and decide if you want to go on a date.

There are a ton of great people on Bumble waiting to get to know you better, so remember these tips next time you match with someone!

When out on dates, we often get self-conscious about what to say. We don’t want to ask the same old questions, so what should we ask? On the flip side of the coin, when we get to know someone better, be it friend or lover, we often forget to ask them anything at all. We assume that we know them, but do we?

People change, and to keep any relationship alive, we need to keep our curiosity alive.

1. If you could have one superpower, what would it be?

How to get to know someone better

Would they make the whole world feel loved, or would they want to be able to fly? You can actually learn quite a lot about people just by learning what their priorities are.

2. Have you ever considered moving somewhere else?

Do they have a secret dream of moving abroad or maybe just to another city? Or, are they the kind of person who wants to live in one place for the rest of their lives?

3. What’s one of your favorite childhood memories?

Our childhoods shape us. Often, we can learn a lot about people simply by looking at their childhood.

4. What can someone do to make you feel really cherished?

We need different things to feel loved and cherished. Some people prefer receiving gifts, others like being told that they are awesome. Some people think that random acts of kindness, like taking out the rubbish or bringing them a surprise coffee at work, is the best thing ever. It varies from person to person.

5. Do you believe in soul mates?

How to get to know someone better

This is quite an interesting question as it shows if someone thinks that life is random or if there are certain things that are pre-destined—or at the very least exist for us to be able to discover them.

There are those who think that soul mates don’t exist, plain and simple, but some have a theory that soul mates were once one soul that was then split.

Others think that we are all born with another half somewhere. Yet, others simply see soul mates as people who are an exceptionally good fit. There are also people who take the concept further and believe that we have soul families, twin flames and so forth. In other words, there are a lot of theories, and you might end up discussing a few of them!

6. What’s one thing you’ve done that you’d never do again?

Most of us have done something that, even if we have learnt a lot from it, we’d never want to do again. For some, that might be dating the wrong type of people; for others, it could simply be never traveling to a certain place again. Looking back, some things often appear quite funny, too, although they may not be so at the time….

7. Do you have some sort of spiritual practice?

Are they religious? Do they believe in meditating? What are their beliefs? This can open up interesting discussions about life, death and everything in between.

8. Do you believe in the paranormal/spirit world, or have you ever seen a ghost?

This ties into the previous question, but many people don’t have a spiritual practice per se and they’re still convinced they’ve seen ghosts. I’ve heard some rather astounding tales over the years, and if you start asking people you might, too, from the ones that can be easily explained to things you’d never dream could happen. Whether it did happen or they just have a vivid imagination is another thing entirely.

9. Have you ever had a recurring dream?

Here, you start digging into their subconscious, which they might or might not want to share. At any rate, analyzing dreams can get very interesting. Of course, you have to be willing to share yours, too…

10. If we could be anywhere, doing anything right now, where would we be and what would we do?

How to get to know someone better

What is it they truly want in this moment? This can offer a lot of insight into a person’s true character and value.

11. If you could change one thing in your life, what would it be?

Even people who seem to radiate happiness have things in their life that they want to change or achieve.

12. What is one thing you’ve done you’d never tell your parents about?

From what happened in Vegas to what happened in Rome, some things are better left untold—but, of course, you want to know all the juicy details!

13. What’s one dream you have that you feel you really need to realize in this lifetime?

Many people have a lot of different dreams, from buying the perfect house to moving to Atlanta, but people also often have that one dream that they feel they need to achieve. It can be something small or something really big, but they feel that it’s the key to the rest of their life.

14. Is there any one book or movie that changed your life?

You might get some interesting replies. Personally, Moulin Rouge changed my life, and I bet you’d never have guessed that. After all, it doesn’t seem like a life-changing movie, does it, but it led to that midnight train to Paris…

15. Do you believe in fate/destiny?

Do they believe in free will, is everything pre-determined or is it something in between?

16. What is a special place you’ve been to where you’d like to go again?

How to get to know someone better

Maybe it’s that one tree they used to read under when they were children. Maybe it’s a town they haven’t visited since they were a child. Or, maybe they just had a wicked time in Tenerife and would love to go again….

It’s not just about the questions you ask, but how you ask them and what conversations they lead to. It appears that people fall in love faster if you speed up the getting to know them phase by introducing questions that gradually increases intimacy. Y

ou also have to look them in the eye a lot. Adrenaline kicks for that matter are also said to speed up the rate at which we fall for someone, which explains why people in adventure movies know that they’ve met the love of their life within a day or two.

Not everybody is a good conversationalist. For some, it just doesn’t come naturally. However, that doesn’t mean that they can’t learn how to start and hold conversations with people.

With the world opening up again and bars, restaurants, and clubs open for business, there’s never been a better time to learn how to talk to people. If you’re going to go out and meet new people, make sure that you respect their boundaries and social distance if necessary.

This article will go over six conversation starters that you can use to initiate a conversation and get to know somebody better.

Coaching

If you’re really uncomfortable with starting conversations with people, then you could consider seeing a coach. If you need help creating togetherness , making friends, or getting out into the community, a coach will be able to talk you through everything that you need to do. They’ll also help you to overcome any insecurities or anxieties that you have about approaching new people.

Coaching can be done online or offline. It’s not usually expensive, and it’s a great way to learn social skills. Coaching is needed now more than ever before. We’ve all been isolated in our homes for over a year, so most of us have forgotten how to communicate effectively.

1) Talk About the Weather

One of the best ways to start a conversation with another person is to talk about the weather. This usually doesn’t work in nightclubs and bars, however. This conversation starter can only be used outdoors. If the weather’s overcast, sunny, or raining, making a comment on the weather is a great way to start talking to somebody. It’s a shared experience that you and the other person can discuss. It’s a good way to open the door for further conversation.

When you have engaged the person in conversation, subtly change the subject. You won’t be able to hold a conversation for long if all you talk about is the weather.

2) Ask for Information

Asking somebody for information is another good way to start a conversation, particularly if you and the other person are both attending an event together. There are lots of things that you can ask for information about, even if you don’t really care about the answer. Most people like to be helpful, so you’re almost guaranteed to get a positive response (unless they’re having a really bad day!) You can also ask a person for the time or for directions.

When you’re asking for information, don’t ask the person anything personal. This can be very intrusive and make the person uncomfortable.

3) Ask for Help

Asking people for help is a fantastic way to start a conversation and to make a person feel good about themselves. Make sure that you don’t ask for too much, however. This can be very irritating, especially if the person doesn’t know you.

Another way to start a conversation is to offer assistance. It’s a great way to show that chivalry isn’t dead and to extend a helping hand. However, you should try not to appear intrusive or to go over the top. If somebody doesn’t appear to be struggling then you might annoy them by intruding and asking them if they need help.

How to get to know someone better

4) Share Your Opinion

If you’re attending an event or just happen to overhear somebody’s conversation, offering your opinion is a great way to start a conversation, particularly if they hold the same opinion as you. If they don’t, it might be a bad idea to share your opinion. You could start an argument! Try to avoid controversial subjects also.

If there are a group of people talking, then they might think you’re strange if you walk up to them and start offering your opinion. Instead, save it for one or two people. Don’t interrupt conversations, either, as this can be perceived as rude.

5) Aren’t You John’s Friend?

Another good way to start a conversation is to mention a mutual friend. If you notice somebody who is in the same friendship circles as you, you can ignite a friendship by approaching them and starting a conversation with them.

People will think of you as someone they know or somebody they should know if you mention mutual friends to them. This is particularly true if they are close with somebody that is a very good friend of yours. You must make sure that the person is on good terms with your mutual friend, however. If they’re not, then they might not talk to you.

6) Compliment the Person

Another fantastic way to approach somebody, especially if you have a crush on them , is to compliment them. When you compliment them, make sure you’re polite and you don’t comment on anything inappropriate, such as their body. Instead, compliment their clothes, accessories, hair, or beauty.

Getting to know somebody doesn’t have to be difficult. It’s important to maintain social distance and not to cross people’s boundaries when you are talking to them. Out of respect wear a mask, even if the government doesn’t require you to legally anymore.