Conversational Skills

Examples of verbal, non-verbal, physical and conversational ‘strokes’

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‘Stroking’ is an important skill to master, for people who want to be more likeable and socially confident.  To keep things simple, a ‘stroke’ in human interaction, is simply a physical or verbal sign that we like, care or understand another human being. The simplest examples abound-

[one_third]Physical strokes as follows-

  • Listening attentively
  • A touch of the hand
  • A handshake
  • A pat on the back
  • [/one_third]

[one_third]And verbal strokes too-

  • We laugh at people’s jokes
  • We call them by their name
  • We look to agree
  • We use a warm and generous tone in our voice
  • We say yes please and thank you
  • [/one_third]

[one_third]And ‘non-verbal’ strokes can include

  • Eye contact,
  • Smiling,
  • Head nodding,
  • Concenration on them in conversation
  • Stillness when listening
  • [/one_third]

Conversational strokes

  • Showing that we’re listening by asking relevant ‘double-click’ type questions
  • Summarising what people have said to us to show we understand
  • Paraphrasing and questioning for detail before responding with a point of our own
  • Looking to show the points we agree upon
Jim Harvey

Jim Harvey

Managing Director at The Message Business
Jim is the MD of The Message Business, a company which helps FTSE 100 companies to sell themselves, and their products better. Speech writer, Prezi trainer and designer, coach and consultant, Jim also finds time to be a proud father and husband.
Jim Harvey
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