Tips from KONE to Start the Conversation
By: Patrick O’Connell, Director, Marketing & Communications, KONE Americas
Confined spaces. Strangers. Complete silence. Elevator rides aren’t typically on par with the local pub when looking to strike up a conversation. But who’s to say they can’t be a place to meet your neighbors and coworkers, learn something interesting, or brighten someone’s day? Today, July 29th, marks “National Talk in an Elevator Day” and as a leading manufacturer of People Flow® innovations, we at KONE think the best way to celebrate is by breaking the ice and kicking off a short chat during your elevator ride today.
Does the idea of engaging with your fellow ascenders and descenders fill you with dread?
Fear not, there are some simple things you can do to kick off the discourse. Below we’ve focused on icebreakers that don’t require you or your fellow elevator companion to step too far out of your comfort zone.
- Greet your fellow elevator companions with a smile and simple “Hi, how is your day going?” This is an easy intro to a possible conversation that goes a bit further than the oft-short responses from “how are you?” This engagement could lift someone’s mood and lead to another conversation if you should meet again during the daily elevator ride.
- Where to? Maybe you are in an office building where there are multiple businesses, or maybe you are on your way out of your apartment complex. Two simple words give you the opportunity to open up a conversation about your day ahead.
- Use context to create conversations. There’s probably someone in your elevator car with a great pair of shoes or a trendy jacket, or taking their adorable dog out for a walk. Ask about the shoes, give the dog a compliment. Another easy way to give a simple compliment, show some friendliness and start a quick conversation.
- The weather. Somewhat mundane and unoriginal, but on the flipside weather is something that we all experience and relate to, so use it as a way to at least break the silence.
But maybe you are feeling more adventurous and want to do something a little bit outside of the box. It is a national holiday after all.
- Take a stab at being a stand-up comedian. Everybody enjoys a laugh – and, there are no shortage of elevator puns out there. For example, “did you hear why the ghost takes the elevator instead of the stairs? Because it really lifts his spirit!”
- Commit to the elevator music. Hear a song you like on your way to your destination? Start humming along for a few minutes. Once your fellow passengers have had a chance to soak in the song, ask them to ‘Name that Tune!’
The beauty of National Talk in an Elevator Day is that it’s an icebreaker itself, but just because it only occurs once a year, doesn’t mean it’s the only day you should do it. Take more time to be open to conversations and friendly to your fellow elevator passengers. Those 30-second rides to your floor could become much more enjoyable.