Have you ever seen two people really engaged in conversation? It was as if they shut out the entire world and were focused solely on one another and what was being exchanged between. No magnet in the world could pull them apart.
Thatâ€™s how I would describe rapport.
But thatâ€™s just rapport. Iâ€™m going to be talking about magnetic rapport.
Whatâ€™s magnetic rapport?
Itâ€™s rapport on steroids
Why would you want to build magnetic rapport?
Two words: Quality relationships. That goes for all types of relationships; friends, lovers, family, business contacts, etc.
Learning how to build magnetic rapport can open many doors.
Youâ€™ll find that people in general will like you even more. Youâ€™ll find people will want to hang around you more often. Youâ€™ll find that people will be glad to help you at any given time. All this, if you are able to build magnetic rapport.
Building magnetic rapport is like having a thick, juicy, 32 ounce steak with mashed potatoes and gravy, green beans, yams, and a nice slice of rich creamy chocolate cake to top it off (did you salivate after reading that because I sure did!). You want that kind of solid nutrition in order to build the relationship.
Ok, so how can we build magnetic rapport? Three things come to mind.
1. Be genuinely interested in learning all about the other person
2. Actively listen
3. Make them feel good and important.
Be genuinely interested in learning all about the other person
The majority of people LOVE talking about themselves.
In order to effectively build rapport, you must be genuinely interested in learning all about the other person. This is extremely easy to do. All you have to do is pretend that this person is the most fascinating person youâ€™ve ever met and let him/her do most of the talking.
Make the focus entirely on the other person. Since people LOVE talking about themselves, all you have to do is give them an opportunity to do it, and they will take it and run all the way to China with it.
Just open the door.
â€śWhat do you do for a living? (standard)â€ť
â€śWhat would you like to do for a living?â€ť
â€śWhen was the last vacation you took?â€ť
â€śWhatâ€™s your ideal weekend?â€ť
â€śWhatâ€™s something that most people donâ€™t know about you?â€ť
â€śWhatâ€™s something that would surprise most people about you?â€ť
Try to weave in these questions after the â€śHi, how are you, etc.â€ť and wait for the floodgates to open.
Youâ€™ll see their eyes light up at the chance of talking about themselves and theyâ€™ll take it from there.
Now what do you do when you have them talking?
Follow along. Let them know that youâ€™re still there by nodding your head and saying subtle go on phrases such as â€śmmm..I seeâ€ť, â€śinterestingâ€ť, â€śreally? I didnâ€™t know thatâ€ť. You know the type of phrases Iâ€™m talking about.
This is simply a signal to the other person that you are following along and are encouraging them to go on because youâ€™re really interested.
On a side note, be truly interested. Donâ€™t fake it. People can smell insincerity a mile away.
When you find yourself talking about a specific subject, expand on that subject. Go deeper. Donâ€™t jump from topic to topic. Youâ€™ll erase all the rapport building youâ€™ve done since then. Dive deeper and see what kind of person they really are.
Youâ€™ll find that most people will leave a big juicy piece of bragging bait in the middle of a conversation. Theyâ€™ll say something like â€śI started my own business and itâ€™s doing pretty goodâ€ť. Theyâ€™ll stop dead right there and wait for your â€śapprovalâ€ť. Thatâ€™s your cue to follow up. They will be watching you intently for permission to unleash all bragging hell on you.
Give it to them. This will make them feel super good about themselves. Compliment them on their bragging rant. Theyâ€™ll appreciate the fact that you let them unload. (I think most people would appreciate this type of opportunity because it is rare to have someone truly listen to your great accomplishments)
If youâ€™ve been actively listening, youâ€™ll find yourself â€śmirroringâ€ť the other person. This involves adopting the same speech rate, tone, type, body mannerisms, etc that the other person is exuding.
For example, when the other person leans forward or leans to the side, youâ€™ll unconsciously lean forward and move to the side.
Youâ€™ll find yourself copying their body language and speech style unconsciously. Unconsciously is the key word here.
Now many people out there, including many salespeople, try to consciously mirror body language, speech rate, tonality, etc in an effort to elicit the illusion of rapport.
Frankly, it may work, (though I donâ€™t think it works at all) but I think the majority of people will pick up on it consciously and wonder why youâ€™re doing it. Theyâ€™ll think youâ€™re being insincere.
The key thing is you will be doing these things unconsciously. If you’re a social butterfly, you know exactly what Iâ€™m talking about. You can tell when you are mirroring, even though you do it unconsciously, because youâ€™ve done it so often before.
If youâ€™ve really created rapport, you will find youâ€™ll be able to lead the mirroring.
For example, if you shift weight to the other leg, theyâ€™ll shift weight to the other leg. If you cross your arms, theyâ€™ll cross your arms. Itâ€™s as if youâ€™re Yoda all of a sudden and it can be pretty fun to do once youâ€™re good at it.
If youâ€™re able to be like Yoda, then youâ€™re pretty good at building rapport. But we want to build magnetic rapport. Hereâ€™s what will take you to the next level.
Make them feel good and important.
Every single person in this world thinks of themselves as something special. We all secretly do. When they see someone else like them, they assume he/she is special, because they are like themselves. So if you â€ścopyâ€ť them, youâ€™ll be like them in their eyes, and they in turn will like you for that. I know that â€ścopyingâ€ť them sounds a little deceitful, but try to think of it as a way to master the art and dance of a conversation.
One method you can use to â€ścopyâ€ť them is to constantly agree with what they are saying. I donâ€™t mean to imply that you automatically agree with everything they say. Iâ€™m just saying it wouldnâ€™t hurt if you agree with them time to time.
If you constantly agree, you silently imply that you are like them, hence special like them. Avoid disagreeing and using the words, â€śbutâ€ť,â€ťno wayâ€ť, â€śI donâ€™t think soâ€ť, etc.
If you must disagree, do so tactfully. Acknowledge what they are saying and follow up graciously. You could say something like â€śI see what you are saying and I know where youâ€™re coming from. Howeverâ€¦â€ť. Itâ€™s much more tactful and will minimize any ill will toward the other person.
Agreeing is also akin to acceptance of what they are saying. You will find that most people are just looking for validation or approval when they speak so give it to them.
Another way to make a person feel good is to give them a genuine compliment when you see an opportunity. A specific and genuine compliment. People can smell insincere compliments a mile away. Tread carefully. Complimenting will never go out of style and it will always make people feel good.
You can also harness the power of biology to make people feel good by using the power of touch. Give a firm handshake, gently tap their arm when making a point, slap them on the back when you make a joke (for males only), etc.
Touch is a very powerful weapon to use in building rapport. It stimulates the production of a oxytocin, which is basically a feel good hormone. If you touch them, the hormone gets released, they feel good, and they associate that feeling good with you. This will in turn want them to be around you. Oxytocin is also linked to promoting bonding and trust if I remember correctly (you can search on google for the exact study they did on it).
My last tip for making a person feel good or important is asking for their advice. This is one of the most powerful things you can do to make people feel important. Everyone likes to be regarded as an expert and itâ€™s always flattering to have people ask for advice on a particular subject we consider ourselves knowledgeable about.
When they finish giving you the advice, donâ€™t forget to say thank you and that you appreciate it. If youâ€™ve learned a lot, say youâ€™ve learned a lot. Be sincere.
If you do a good job of making people feel good and important about themselves, youâ€™ll be like a drug they canâ€™t get enough of. I guarantee it.
So start making it a habit of being genuinely interested in the other person. Really listen to them and make them feel good and important about themselves. Not only will they feel like a million bucks, but I guarantee that you will too.