Wine and Sports: Making Connection Points in the Workplace

Posted on: September 27th, 2011 by Jen Mueller

Wine and Sports: Two subjects every business professional should be able to talk about.

John Nordstrom made a profound impact on the way customers expect to be treated during their shopping experience by helping the Nordstrom department stores identify customer service as its defining characteristic.

I greatly admire and respect John, who was a former owner of the Seahawks.  I see him quite frequently and always enjoy our conversations.  Just last week, our conversation turned to wine.  John didn’t realize I enjoyed wine as much as he did, and we were quickly engaged in a conversation about varietals, wine regions and vintners.

The topic of wine gives John and I another connection point and increases the chance of future conversations.  That means more opportunities for me to hear John’s incredible insights and advice.

Your ability to become a good conversationalist and an effective communicator opens similar doors.  The more connection points you can identify with a business client, customer, colleague or potential client, the more chances you have to converse.  Those conversations build rapport and lead to increased business transactions.

Don’t worry about how much you know about wine or sports, just showing an interest is enough to make the initial connection.  John is a fan of French wine while I prefer Washington wines.  Both have their merits and both provide conversational opportunities.


Jen Mueller, America's Expert Talker, CEO Talk Sporty to MeThe wine I’m drinking this week:  Stopped by the Bookwalter tasting room in Woodinville to pick up the new release of 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon.  To make room for those bottles, we opened a bottle of the 2008 Cab Sauvignon; Wine Enthusiast rated the last two releases above 90 points.  It is a wonderful jammy wine, that paired nicely with braised short ribs.



CEO Talk Sporty to Me, America's Expert TalkerJen Mueller, America’s Expert Talker, is the Founder and CEO of Talk Sporty to Me.  Jen is committed to helping you boost your interpersonal skills, engage in more effective communication and reap the rewards of productive conversations.  She’s available to speak for keynotes, presentations and workshops.  Contact for more information and read more at

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