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How To Develop Good Rapport

Updated on February 4, 2010

Developing good rapport with others is a skill.  In relationships whether it is  one intended to lead to long term commitment or a business interaction,  the first few minutes of meeting can seal a deal or turn someone right off you.  You need to know how to ask questions, master body language, respond and give feedback positively.

 

Good rapport building skills will help to forge healthy bonds between you and others. When used effectively they help to foster strong friendly relationships.

 

Here are some tips on how to build rapport

 

1.       Questioning technique

 

The technique of asking questions to build rapport can be likened to those asked by someone at a job interview or those of a journalist writing an article.

 

Do not be too formal.  Chill and make a point to discover areas of common interest.  You can start off by making a statement about their clothing or their hobby and then follow up with other related questions

Avoid any contentious questions which could lead to arguments.  Keep the focus on the common interest areas only.  It is better to be safe than sorry.

 

2.       A  Positive attitude

 

 

It is important you are mindful of your attitude when relating to others. People can generally tell when you are condescending or your attitude is bad.  Behavioural psychologists say behaviour breeds so let you behaviour always be exemplary.

3.       Be open

 

Encourage an open exchange of ideas. Shyness, inexperience or timidity may cause some people not to know how to communicate effectively.  You can help them through your body language e.g.  warm smiles, reassuring nods etc. Face the person, look at them in their eyes and make them feel comfortable.

 

4.       Active listening

 

Listen closely to what is being said. Keep your mind on what they are saying and not on what you want to say next. Watch their body language and respond to signals

                                                                          

If the person’s tone of voice changes or they become defensive by folding their arms to shield their body this could be a clue to change the subject or give them more space.

However if the person is leaning towards you, responding positively to what you say and communicating freely it is highly likely that you have been successful in building rapport.

 

5.       Compliment

 

Compliments go down well with everybody.  When you compliment it leaves the person with a good memory to recall. Now that’s building good rapport.  Being sincere is important however as nobody takes kindly to a false compliment.

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