I was in Vegas this past week at a roofing trade show. I must have talked to 100 people over the course of the few days and I quickly create judgements based on these interactions. Does the person listen? Are they talking about pertinent topics? Do they have a sense of humor? It doesn’t take long to realize whether you’ll get along with someone.

I like to use the word connection. There’s a sense of, “we’re both on the same page” and this conversation isn’t boring. I’d guess it happens in about 10% of conversations. The best ones tend to be with people who are not egotistical and who choose topics that both people are interested in. One sided conversations make me want to use my favorite line, “I’m going to let you go because I know you’re busy.”

I’m hardly an expert at communication, but I’m better than most because I listen, don’t take it too serious, and can respond with intelligent, relevant questions. It’s all about the light hearted nature of the banter that many people miss. I don’t mind heavy subjects at appropriate times, but immigration laws are not the best trade show topic. All of these factors join together to form whether you will like someone or not. I’ve read that your favorite people have all of the qualities you admire. Your least favorite ones have the qualities you don’t.

The ability to be liked is one of my finest qualities even if I hate everyone. My life satisfaction comes from the 10% of conversations I enjoy. The harder I try to accept people for who they are (I can’t), maybe i can get that number to 50% by the end of my life.