What Don’t You Do (for a living)?

Woman Enjoying Gardening with her Dog

Q: What do you do?

A: <Answers Will Vary>

The above question is often a boring ‘opening’ or conversation killer during an initial introduction. It merely elicits a title (e.g. a banker, a doctor, a project manager, a teacher). Of course, your professional life is hard to sum up in a word or two and no one really cares about all the minor tasks you actually do all day. Besides, your job is only a very small part of who you really are. A better way to get to know someone is to learn all the things they don’t do….
Here are some better questions to ask people:

  • What do you do for fun?
  • What are your hobbies, past times, or passions?
  • Have you read any good books lately?
  • Any upcoming travel plans?
  • What is one thing on your bucket list?
  • Who would you like to meet?
  • What is your biggest goal for this year and how can I help?
  • If you could live anywhere, where would that be?

These questions get people talking about interesting topics with enthusiasm as it relates close to their true essence. Next time you meet a stranger at a party, cocktail party, or networking event, do your best not to merely swap titles and get to know the other person in a deeper, meaningful, personal way.