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Never talk about the weather! How to be more interesting and to steer smalltalk like a pro

WWB-Area | Learning field

Work and management techniques | Selfmanagement for science

Starting Point

More than ever, the art of smalltalk is crucial for young scientists, like it or not. It is also a great opportunity to increase systematically your professional network, connecting with peers and colleagues. Smalltalk can open doors by engaging others in light-hearted and meaningful conversation. The good news is: All it takes to master the art of smalltalk is this course and a little bit of practice afterwards. This course is inspired by sophisticated and creative best-practice examples from the US and England; furthermore, this online training is practical and interactive, so be ready to actively participate and exchange your ideas with others.


At the end of this online course, all participants will have a toolbox with your individual smalltalk techniques which they can apply independently after the course in different contexts and situations.


    • There is no second chance for the first impression: Creative ways to present oneself and to start a conversation; the importance of individual communication style and personal appearance
    • The do‘s and dont’s: The TOP 10 rules of engaging small talk
    • Understanding what people really want and need: Connecting with people in small talk through social intelligence
    • Best-practice example and techniques from professional interviews (podcasts, radio and talk shows and other formats)
    • Spontanious talk: The art of enliving conversations through humor and situative remarks
    • The magic of engaging questions: How you can gain fascinating insight into the character of your conversation partners, while generating strong interest in you
    • How to deal confidently with mishaps and how to end unpleasant conversations elegantly


    Interactive and practical group exercises, conversation simulations, structured group discussions with constructive feedback and input sessions from the trainer. Max. number of participants: 10.


    Student workers are welcome to participate in the training, subject to availability. 

    Tue, 08.12.2020, 9:00am-3:00pm
    6 hours, 8 working units á 45 min
    Online course. Participants receive login data by email prior the course.
    Videoconference. Participants who want to prepare prior the course are invited to visit our Praxisblog and our Wiki.
    Dr. Michael Gordian
    Course language
    For employees, assistant lectures, registered doctoral candidates at TU Berlin and junior scientists at HU, FU, Charité, the course is free of charge. If you do not belong to these groups of people, please contact  for information on fees.
    Participants should have sound English language skills.

    Participants please keep a laptop/ PC with video and audio function or a webcam and headset ready.

    Assuming successful participation, you receive a certificate of attendance.

    For registration, please fill in the provided form. In case of any questions regarding the course, please contact .

    In case of any organizational questions please contact .


    Your binding participation is very important to us. On the one hand, our courses are connected with high costs. On the other hand, we plan much group work and work interactively with you. Hence, should you be unable to attend the entire course or should you be prevented from attending the course at all, please let us know as soon as possible so that we can allocate the place to other interested persons. In the event of multiple unexcused absence, we reserve the right to exclude you from further ZEWK courses.

    Please help us to develop our program in a targeted manner. Your data will not be disclosed to third parties.

    Registration Never talk about the weather! How to be more interesting and to steer smalltalk like a pro

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