Whatever situation you're in, my advice for social interactions is to be genuinely interested in people. I'm kind of gregarious, I like to talk to people. Fortunately for me, people like to talk about themselves. You don't have to actually do much talking if you're not good at it, you ask open-ended questions instead. Don't be pushy. But who/what/when/where/how/why questions, like about someone's interests or hobbies or passions, can lead to conversations where your partner walks away thinking "hey, I like that person, they were really nice." Because you're interested in them. Watch how Anthony Bourdain or Louis Theroux do it, or Joe Rogan. He's just a dude who likes people.
One of my neighbors is a Trump guy in 50s who drives a truck for a living, so I talk to him about trucking. I ask him questions. Another neighbor is a Native American guy with a passion for snowboarding and skiing. He goes on trips. He's strong.
Where do people find their strength and their courage? Maybe it's a career (although often it isn't), or a hobby like I said. Or maybe it's their daughter who they care deeply about and she's their whole world, and they're doing things that make them proud. What are those things?
I made another friend one time who was in the Bandidos – the biker gang. I look like the complete opposite of someone you'd think would get along with bikers, or outlaw bikers would want to have around them, but I didn't judge him. I talked to him about motorcycles, and once he trusted me and opened up (over several hours), I asked him a genuine question: what does it feel like blasting down a rural highway with 20 other guys riding feet away from each other? The answer is that it feels fucking amazing, and that's what he lives for. They have to disciplined and they're part of a team.
That's how I connected to a guy I met at a bar who welded for a living. He is in tightly-knit group of people who worked hard and they had to trust each other. He was strong too.
You can't plan this, it requires flexibility, fluidity, you can't plan this. You find the best means to an end which is to connect. I've found that very general advice to be simple but it opens up a whole world.