I am new to USA, so culture, language and everything for me is new and it's been a few months that I'm hired in a company.

Totally, I'm a reserved person but would like to have friendly communication to my colleagues. My speaking skill is the same as my writing. But I haven't been able to establish a good and friendly communication with my colleagues and this bothers me much and makes me feel like a dull.

Besides, I don't dare to talk much to anyone because I'm not familiar to the culture here and I don't feel confident while speaking, that is, I am always afraid of making mistake in conversation.

Any suggestion for improving my communication skills would be appreciated.

  • I've actually lost my self confidence and can't stop thinking pessimistic. I am also dealing with anxiety and deep depression. with that said, I'm rarely assigned a task to do, which makes me feel more useless. But to rephrase my question, I don;t know how and don't dare to start a conversation with my colleague. I usually answer their greeting with few words and they think that I am introverted. I don't how to behave and speak more friendly. – Ms improving Oct 17 '17 at 20:13
  • @Verver You might also take a look around English Language Learners, though I think your question may be too broad there as well. They do have a nice list of resources in their Help Center though. – David K Oct 17 '17 at 20:20

The best way to get into office conversations is to visit the coffee/break room regularly. Not excessively which can get you a slacker badge real quick but once or twice in the morning time and same in the afternoon would work. If nothing else, get a cup of water and return to your desk. If you see people gathered and talking, pay attention to what they are talking about. If it is about a project that you have some knowledge about, you may interject a small opinion here and there if the conversation is long enough and open ended. If they are talking about social life, pay attention to the topic. It most probably will be something about sports, movies or if you are working at a 'nerdy' place, about the latest Star Wars flick or game release.

After accumulating enough knowledge about what the office culture is like, it is up to you to decide if you want to get into such a culture. If you do, internet is your oyster. You can find all sorts of talking points about any subject matter. I am pretty sure, getting into conversation for the first few times, but it all takes practice. Start with listening more and talking less at first and slowly increase your talking time as you feel more confident.

It is not only a thing for foreigners, but also it is a thing at any new workplace you go to. Every office's culture is different.

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Talk to your direct supervisor about these concerns. They should have good advice on what to do.

You say your speaking skill is the same as your writing. Sounds very good to me, so perhaps you're communication skills are better than you think.

Are there employee resource groups you can join to socialize a bit with coworkers and meet people in a more relaxed situation than the day to day office space? Where I've work we've got groups for Hispanics, LGBT, military vets, and other things.

Or, outside of work, try meetup.com - when moving alone to a new city, I met many great people through meetups.

Also, do you cook? I sit next to a woman from India, and she brings in Indian treats she cooks herself, and that's been a great conversation starter.

What part of the US are you in? Can you find local groups of people from your cultural background? That could be an avenue towards becoming more comfortable going out into your new surroundings. I'm a bit of an introvert, so a trick I've used often in my life is to seek out friendships with more extroverted people, and then when we're out somewhere, they'll always start up conversations with strangers, then it's easy for me to be part of the conversation too.

Hope these suggestions are useful.

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Generally, it's great to have lunch with as many different people in a company as possible over the course of your time there. Usually people are very open to meeting new people. You could start out with people in your immediate team and then use the power of network branching to meet people they know, and so on.

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  • I have problem with my immediate team. I can't write it here because I'm not sure if IT can check my pages – Ms improving Oct 17 '17 at 20:17

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