by Vadim Slavin
- Be polite but firm. No need to be rude but it pays to be confident in your actions.
- Introduce a friend in order to switch the dynamic of the conversation which is going nowhere. Simply pull a new person into the conversation creating a pause for your imminent 'escape'.
- Bring a conversation full circle to take the air out of the conversation. For example, if the conversation started with a discussion of a common acquaintance you have in mind, you can say "Great, I will let Yuri know we chatted - it was an interesting coincidence we both knew him from the same conference. It was great talking to you - thank you!". A firm handshake should be enough to break away.
- Excuse yourself with or without a reason. Whether you need to take a bathroom break, get a refill on your drink, or quickly catch someone you have been chasing all night - you can excuse yourself at this opportune moment. However, do not feel like you owe an explanation. Simply stating "Please excuse me. It was great chatting with you" should be enough. Make sure to follow with a brief but firm handshake to avoid lingering contact.
- Close with a follow up if you are considering connecting with this person in the future. End the conversation with something along the lines of: "I am sorry I have to go but let's connect on LinkedIn and let me get back to you on that information I mentioned earlier".