Villa Maria Survey Reveals 'Family' Is UK's Favourite Conversation Topic

LONDON: From life changing news to meaningful heart to hearts, conversation shapes life decisions everyday across the UK - but have you ever stopped to ask yourself why conversations count?

New Zealand's most admired wine brand, Villa Maria, has put the spotlight on just what makes conversation invaluable - great eye contact, good listening skills and avoiding Love Island are high up on the list.

The nationwide survey, commissioned by Villa Maria with Opinion Matters, had bad news for Love Island fans, as the nation voted it their least favourite conversation topic! 40% of us hate discussing what goes on in the villa, closely followed by talking about religion, Donald Trump and celeb gossip. We do, however, love discussing family which came out top as the nation's favourite conversation topic (30%), followed by TV, movies and food.

From body language, listening skills and storytelling, Villa Maria has uncovered the facts about talking the talk

Attention span

1 in 3 Brits only manage 2 minutes before they zone out of a boring conversation - although 7% of overly polite Brits stick it out for 20 minutes!


Only 12% of Brits would tell someone they weren't interested in what they were saying - with 1 in 4 subtly trying to change the subject and 1 in 5 faking an urgent need for the loo.
Challenging the old adage 'never talk about money, politics or religion' over a third of people (35%) think a topic which inspires debate or discussion is the mark of a successful conversation.

Storytelling tips

50% think the subject should be something everyone can get involved in like a mutual interest.
Half of Brits say maintaining good eye contact helps a good chat - but avoid waving your arms about, only 1 in 10 say expressive hand gestures are helpful.
Over ΒΌ of us admit awkward silences are our biggest fear in social situations.

Angela Lewis, Villa Maria brand ambassador, said Villa Maria's first chapter stems from a family conversation between the company's founder Sir George Fistonich and his father back in 1961. Conversation is at the heart of all of our relationships, just as it's at the heart of our business, and so we wanted to find out what really makes for a good discussion.

Many meaningful conversations take place over a glass of wine and to celebrate, Villa Maria is running a series of expert talks exploring the value of conversation. One expert is Colin MacLachlan, former SAS soldier and hostage negotiator, from Channel 4's SAS Who Dares Wins and Channel 5's Secrets of the SAS.

Giving his insight, he said I think body language is incredibly important and a large proportion of communication is non-verbal. A lot can be read through how someone's posture is, how they deliver something, eye contact, what their arms are doing and if the person feels they mean it. Silences are also important; by creating a silence you almost create a void for the other person to fill, showing empathy for what they have to say.
(PRN | 6 months ago)

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Villa Maria Survey Reveals 'Family' Is UK's Favourite Conversation Topic