BLUF : High C with High S tendancies needs more examples of Good/Bad topics
I have been listening to MT for 5 years now and have taken much of the advice about building relationships as a co-worker and a manager very much to heart.
MT says a good judgement about a manager's relationship with directs is if he knows the names of their spouse and kids.
And yet, this recent Podcast seems to say that asking for specifics about spouses and kids is out of bounds.
I have directs whom I know little about their home life. I have asked general questions about home life, but they have never told me about roomates, children or significant others. They have been directs for a few years, and my Boss (thier skip) seems to know more about them than I do.
Yes, I do try to engage them in small talk, but they do not open up to me.
By the advice of this cast it seems right that I have not directly asked them about it.
* By the advice of this postcast some of the normal rules for small talk do not seem to apply -- Such as asking open ended questions.
How do I square the "A manager should know the names of a direct's spouse and kids" with this advice to not pry into personal lives and realtionships ?
* Please, what other topics should I avoid ?
Can I ask if they have a hobby ?
Can I ask them open ended questions -- Like - "How was your weekend, oh tell me about it." ?
Can I ask "Where did you grow up ?, Where are you from ?" - I suppose that some people might not want to talk about thie origins.
Please -- this cast has me very concerned that I might "step into it".