Want to get to know people, lower the walls between you? Find something that makes you both laugh. Not just a giggle or a snicker, I mean a belly full or laughing. I can’t tell you how many learning programs I have conducted across the globe where one good laugh changes everything.
It is hard to be angry, bored or uninvolved when you’re laughing along with everyone else in the room. There is a leveling that happens once the laughter stops. Honest conversation and great thinking are able to flow within the room and the walls that may have existed dissolve right before your eyes. It’s one of the reasons speakers tell funny stories, laughter unites the room and focuses the audience on the topic at hand.
Good news is you do not have to be the one who is funny, simply leave space within the room for humor to evolve. Maybe bring funny toys or nerf balls, things that make goofy noises or silly photos. Whatever it is make it universal and silly. All adults in all countries have a five year old trapped inside just waiting to get out. One laugh leads to two which leads to even more. More laughter more learning, more ideas and more progress.