Making Conversation with Difficult Passengers
March 15, 2016
We’ve previously discussed how to deal with difficult customers, rare as they may be, but what about sparking a conversation with your passengers in order to avoid the awkward silences that sometimes take over? Sure, talking about the weather may be the staple topic of conversation, but that might not cut it.
Breaking the ice between strangers doesn’t have to be an art form. On the contrary, it’s something that everyone can do, no matter how shy they feel. Not only do interesting conversations make time go by quicker, they also leave you and your passengers feeling good during and after the ride.
So, next time dialogue doesn’t seem to flow, try out these ideas:
People tend to feel more connected to others when they’re like-minded, but that doesn’t mean you have to share the same interests as your customers. It does mean that if you make eye contact and maintain a friendly demeanour throughout the entire ride, your passenger will feel more at ease. So even a topic as dry as, ‘it sure is cold lately,’ can go over smoothly if you already displayed an affable attitude.
For better results, however, you could try to find a common interest. This will always make for an interesting conversation, since you and your customers can talk about something you all love, which will leave everyone feeling happy and glad they got you as their taxi driver. Trying out several topics of conversation until you hit the right one might be necessary, though.
You might be unsure how to even begin the conversation and don’t want to talk about how warm or cold it is outside. If that’s the case, you can enquire about any other light topic that won’t leave anyone offended or upset. Talking about the song playing on the radio, asking whether your passenger has ever been to the place they’re now going, or enquiring about countries they’d like to visit are all great conversation starters.
If your passenger still doesn’t seem very responsive, you can try again with a different topic, if he or she remains friendly. This may be because they might just not know how to carry on the conversation, rather than because they don’t want to talk to you. On the other hand, if your customer doesn’t seem very friendly or keen on carrying out a conversation, it’s probably better to not insist.
Chatting with passengers can be difficult, especially if the awkward silence has already stretched out and you don’t see an easy way out of it. If your customers seem approachable and receptive to conversation, don’t be afraid to try out different topics and see if you hit it off.
Do you know any other ice-breakers to kick start a conversation and leave behind the awkward silence? Head on over to Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ or YouTube and leave your suggestions with us.
If your favourite topic of conversation at the moment is the right taxi insurance, we’re the right people to speak to! To choose an insurance option or to learn more about which one is best for you, don’t hesitate to contact us on 0333 2000 094 and a member of our team will be on hand to help!