How not to greet

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How not to greet

 By Caroline Nderitu

When did it become socially acceptable to kick off a conversation by finding fault with other person?

Casual greetings are great conversation openers, but how casual is too casual? Some of these greetings are rampant but often futile. Why choose to start any surprise encounter by taking issue with the person? Even as joke, it only serves to put the other person down or on the defensive.

At your next meeting, do your best take the pressure off people by breaking the ice in a way that creates a warm and welcoming atmosphere. You could start by establishing your resolve to steer clear of the following well-meaning, yet uncalled-for attacks:

a)    “Hey! You are so lost!”
No, I am not. I know exactly where I am, and where I have been. Our paths just did not cross and there are any number of reasons why that is so. For instance, geographical bearing - I am based in another part of the county, country or continent. There could also be a chance I am indeed avoiding you.

b)    “Sasa! Umenitupa!” (Hi! You’ve thrown me away!)
No, I have not abandoned you. The reason we have not spoken or met could be as in ‘a’ above. Other reasons could include: We have both been busy, we are not that close, we are both not good communicators - which therefore means we are both guilty of “throwing each other away”

Some of these expressions include dismissive good-byes such as:

c)    “Bye! Say hello to everyone!”
Everyone! Really? Please narrow it down to some actual people, for instance: The Kiplagats, your boys, the chama, or at least, that lovely wife yours (if her name has escaped you).

True, these words just roll off the tongue but even so, do consider revising this in future. It sound rather disconnected, indifferent or even snobbish, doesn’t it?

Others are:

d)    “You mean are here?”
e)    “So you came?”
f)    “Today you decided to say hallo, eh?”
g)    “Ah Doc, nice wedding? I have been having this rash behind my neck, could you have a quick look before they cut the cake?”
h)    “Otherwise?”

Feel free to add your own in the comments section below


Copyright©Caroline Nderitu. 2015. CCL Public Speaking and Presentation Training. Nairobi, Kenya. All rights reserved.