Do You Talk At People Or Converse With Them And Listen... Building Rapport? 

By Ange Fonce

Recently I want to a party and one of my friends warned me that his brother in law might be at the party. 

My friend told me that Tommy had his own business and was very successful. 

And Tommy... not his real name may I add... had a reputation for only being concerned about Tommy... and I found that out within the first 10 seconds of meeting him. 
So when I introduced myself and asked if he had been in the school football team... I then “listened” for the next twenty five minutes as I got his entire sports history from high school... how not only had he been a football star... how he had also played basketball and cricket... basketball being his stand out sport. 

In that 25 minutes I received his complete resume The High School Sports That I Used To Play right before he got to the party... he was so well versed in recounting every victory that he had... great for me if I was gathering “intelligence” about him... not so great for building “rapport” and building a “connection”... the “communication” was completely “one way traffic.” 

Now... I am not saying that you should not be proud of your “accomplishments”... and if someone asks you specifically about a play or a particular sport that you were in... you should be able to answer them without feeling like you are “bragging”... and to “listen” to someone give a detailed account of themselves like that without them specifically asking you would you like to “hear it”... I heard enough to last a year... and I am an “excellent listener.” 

Yes I gathered a lot of “intelligence” about Tommy and his sports history... and was “bored to tears” in the process... no one is impressed by a “braggert.”

Unfortunately... this is an all too “common occurrence” that I see people doing when they are trying to “influence” and “persuade” others... they “talk at people”... and they never get out of their own “biography”... that is to say... they talk endlessly about themselves and never get around to “finding out” about the other person. 

And if you are trying to “influence” or “persuade someone”... and only “talking about yourself” is a sure fire way to not “accomplish your goal.” 

Even if you are using a “story” to try to “influence” and “persuade”... if you “focus” only on how great you are or how great your product or service is... you are not building “rapport”  to get inside your “listeners mind” and “figure out” what is “important” to him or her. 

A more “powerful approach”...  is instead of talking about yourself... would be to “find out” what is “important” to your “listener”... and then “construct” a story to “bridge the gap” from your “listener” to what it is that “you want your listener to do”... ethically of course. 

And if you do not “feel” that what you have is a “good fit” for your “listener”... then it’s better to let them know up front... and in terms of “influencing” and “persuading” people that might be able to use what you are selling... whether you are selling a product... service... idea... and  even yourself... the best way to start is “figuring out” what it is that “they want or need”... and going from there. 

Usually this is done with “open questions”... to “establish rapport” with someone... and “rapport” is not built and established by being overbearing and obnoxious by “bragging”... building “rapport” is done by “figuring out” what they are “thinking” and going from there. 

Yours Sincerely

Ange is an  Author... Speaker... and Dynamic Peak Performance Personal Development Consultant... and Humanistic Counselling Psychologist and Sexologist... who works with men and women who desire to personally develop themselves and their relationships to become Dynamic Lifers... creators of their own life and wealth! 

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