Posted on: May 15th, 2010 by Jen Mueller

I’m currently in the middle of a 3 city 10 day road trip with the Seattle Mariners.  When I’m on the road I enjoy reading USA Today.  I love the short concise articles, the wide range of subject matter and the format.   But I rarely read the paper cover to cover.  Just the other day I read a headline about the Phoenix Suns and the depth of their bench.   I have a tough time following the NBA since the Sonics left Seattle so I didn’t read any further.  Later that afternoon I end up talking to a few people on the hotel patio.  The conversation turns to sports and I learn they are from Phoenix and following the Suns.  What do I say? “It looks like they’ve got a pretty deep bench.  That’s huge in the playoffs.”   The Suns fans nodded approvingly and added that it would still be a challenge going against the Lakers.

Reading headlines is a great way to stay on top of what’s going on without investing a lot of time or effort on your part.  If you’re traveling and out of town, knowing the top stories in the city you’re visiting can go a long way in making conversation at your business meeting.   And don’t be nervous to jump into a conversation armed with just the information you saw in a headline.  You always say something like “I was skimming over the paper today and saw something about (fill in the blank).  Did you see that?” or “I was running late and just barely caught a glimpse of (fill in the blank).  What did I miss?”  Those are perfectly reasonable ways to set your boundaries and be a part of the conversation at the same time.

Easy enough right?  For more easy tips check out the Talk Sporty to Me Happy Hours coming up this month in the Seattle area.