How 6 months ago
admin #howto

How to Build Rapport

Watch to see if they are hanging their arms loosely at their sides or perhaps they are frantically gesturing in the air while talking. Try to incorporate some of these movements into your own style. This might mean moving your hands more or maybe keeping them more still.



Shadow the placement and movement of the other person’s hands.

Watch to see if they are hanging their arms loosely at their sides or perhaps they are frantically gesturing in the air while talking. Try to incorporate some of these movements into your own style. This might mean moving your hands more or maybe keeping them more still.



Follow the other person’s posture.

Look at your conversation partner, or the entire group, to see if they are acting casual or more formal. Are their spines straight and heads at attention? Or, are they leaning in various relaxed positions? Mirror the formality of the other people that you are around to show that you fit in.



Match the other person’s breathing patterns.

This is a more subtle way to get in sync with a conversation partner. Observe them closely to see if they are breathing from deep in their chest or more shallowly from their diaphragm. Try to match the pace of their inhalations and exhalations.



Meet the energy level of the other person(s).

If the person you are talking to is more shy and retiring, then talking with them in a hyper or enthusiastic way could be overwhelming for them. Similarly, if you are talking with an exuberant person, then being very soft-spoken might lead to one-sided conversation.



Mimic the tone and volume of your conversation partner(s).

A person who speaks in quiet, soft tones can feel steamrolled by a loud and boisterous counterpart. Raise or lower your voice until you notice that the person that you are talking to is actually paying attention to what you are saying. If you are partner is a fast-talker, you may need to speed up, too.



Mention an end to the conversation.

This is especially important if you are talking with a stranger or acquaintance. Work into the conversation a mention of needing to be elsewhere soon. This will make the other person not feel obligated to talk for a long while, which will actually build rapport between you both.



Ask for assistance.

Come up with a small task that the other person could help with you with. Then, bring it up to them and ask for their help. This will make them feel needed and important. It may also lead to them requesting a favor from you as well, which can further build your connection.



Avoid correcting other people in conversation.

Unless it is a very serious issue that requires an immediate correction by you, just give whoever you are talking to a bit of slack. If you correct every error, then you risk alienating others and appearing superior or arrogant.



Listen to someone talking without always responding.

Let the other person say their piece and just sit back and listen. Show that you are engaged in what they are saying by nodding your head or encouraging them to continue at intervals. As soon as they pause, resist the urge to jump right in with your own story.



Intermix open-ended questions into conversation.

These are questions that push for answers beyond a basic “yes” or “no.” They encourage people to expand on their previous responses. They also show that you are listening closely and carefully. Questions that start with “How?” or “Why?” are generally the best.



Offer a small tangible or intangible gift.

It doesn’t really matter what the gift is, as long as it is thoughtful and positive. It can be an item, such as a piece of candy, or something intangible, like a positive reference. The key here is to create a deeper relationship. In many cases, your gift will prompt them to communicate more with you or even offer their own gift.



Be trustworthy.

If you promise something, no matter how small, make sure that you follow through with it. Better yet, communicate your timeline to the other person. Building rapport is closely connected to building trust. If you are trustworthy, other people will see you as “safe” and will want to spend time and do business with you.



Build your relationship slowly.

If you push to become best friends instantly, then you will likely scare the other person away. Instead, enjoy each small step in your budding friendship and take your time. This is also important from a cultural perspective. Some cultures see it as outright insulting to discuss personal matters during initial meetings.

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