In NLP Rapport is described as that unconscious empathetic relationship to another person. The quality of relationship that results in mutual trust and responsiveness. Rapport is gained by understanding and respecting the way that another person sees the world. It is like speaking their language. It results in a feeling of comfort and commonality between people. Rapport over a length of time evolves into trust.
This is about so much more than just getting along with people…this is a specific process that works every time.
Matching and mirroring are techniques used in NLP for gaining rapport.
The test of whether you are in rapport with another person is “If you lead, they follow.” This is known as pacing and leading. Scratch your nose when you think that you are in rapport and see if they do the same within the next minute or so.
You can match someones breathing rate, their body movements, their language presuppositions, the familiar words that they use. The principle is that if someone thinks that you are like them, then they will like you.
Building Rapport is a key skill in communicating with others. It can be particularly beneficial in sales, in education and in therapy. Fortunately it is a process that can be learnt and we offer comprehensive training in this area on our NLP Training Courses, Sales Training Courses, Communication Skills Training Courses and online in our NLP online training centre.
As well as getting in rapport with other individuals, we can also get in rapport with groups of people or audiences. This is a really useful technique for trainers and presenters.
In fact, sometimes we get in rapport with people and groups by accident..after all this is an unconscious process..
When I was in the cinema recently I noticed that a large portion of the row were in identical poses. I then noticed that people around me were in very similar poses and so I decided to try to figure out who the leader was. As it turned out, it wasn’t me! I tried to move (lead) and no one followed me. Then a girl in the middle of the row changed posture and gradually everyone changed their own posture to match her. This was very interesting to witness and I learned that I was unconsciously being led by someone else’s physiology.
Interesting and useful stuff….!
See Anthony’s blog for more on rapport. Rapport – be a master communicator.