Candid Conversations: Vivien Mangalindan
Candid Conversations

How to Establish Rapport and Make New Friends

Feb 17, 2023, 4:29 AM
Vivien Mangalindan

Vivien Mangalindan


THE BACK STORY A week ago, some millennials and Gen Z friends asked me : ’How are you able to attend events and webinars, talk to strangers and end up with new friends easily and effortlessly?’

In a world where, nowadays, all you need to make ‘friends’ is to go online, click LIKE and send a FRIEND REQUEST - these young ones are lonely and wanting to learn How to establish rapport and make REAL friends.


When people tell me their name and what they do for a living, I smile and ask some plain and simple questions.

Be curious. Ask. They end up laughing at my seemingly childlike yet sincere questions.

*What did you want to be when you were around five years old?

*Did you want to be a pilot, beauty queen, doctor… or what?

Then we end up talking about the present.

* What do you do now?

* Is your work anywhere near or related to your childhood dreams?


You will be pleasantly surprised to realize that people tend to like you when they see that you like them first.

Keep your conversation light. Don’t go into deep philosophical questions, politics or religion. Neither is this the time to toot your own horn or recite your credentials and achievements.

Go with the flow if they have stories to tell. Show interest by asking relevant questions. Keep these magical words ready: Who. What. Why. When. Where. How.


Think about this. Look at how children in a playground are quickly able to establish rapport and make friends. Just be authentic, and they will want to make friends with you.


*Show interest.

*Be an active listener.

*Make it about Them - not You.

Try these simple techniques, and you will see how easy it will be to make new friends!

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