Saturday, October 29, 2005

Building rapport is essential to all communication

Good rapport is essential to any persuasion process (exept maybe in the army). It is the second step in the covert hypnosis persuasion process. If you want to really influence someone, you need to get into rapprot with them. The mind is much more susceptible to suggestions by people it trusts (a no brainer). So, here we'll quickly review how to build powerful rapport with people.

It is very important to first notice how our prospect feels just before you enter into converstion with him or her. You can basically feel their mood if you listen to your senses as your subconscious is picking it up. The problem with this is that we've been conditioned not to listen to our intuition, but to our reason. This doesn't go for women - that's why they can "read" people so much better! Fortunately (and in some cases unfortunately) for them, it is sociably acceptible to be more in touch with their feelings and emotions and also to express them.

Men tend to suppress feelings and try to "think" everything through. They don't (or so they think!) rely on their "gut feeling" that much -- which can be a problem sometimes. So this first important step should not be that hard for women, but men should practise a bit. In a while it becomes second nature. A great thing you can do is to learn to read body language.

OK, so now you've noticed the state your prospect is in. It is time to match that state yourself. You do that by taking up their physical posture, match their voice tone and facial expression (=mirroring). Don't be too obvious here as you don't want them to think you're making fun of them! Make it look natural. You don't need to match them 100%. Make it similar. That's something our brain like: similarity.

After initial conversation look interested (but not too much!) and start imitating their moves (=pacing). Imagine you are their mirror image (=mirroring) and simply repeat what they do. Again, and this is very important: don't overdo it. Don't be an actual mirror image, but rather use a delay. Do the move in the next 10 seconds after they've done it. Example: if they pick up a glass and take a sip, you do it within the next 10 seconds too.

Soon they will warm up to you and your moves will become sinchronised automatically. That's what you're looking for. WARNING: don't be too tense and overcalculating. You don't HAVE to match everything. Certainly don't think about it all the time. Just know it and do it naturally. Covert hypnosis will work only when you've established a good rapport (= a feeling of liking and understanding - much like when you have an interesting conversation with someone with same views as you).

Also a good strategy is to listen and not to speak too much. Simply ask questions and listen in a way that says you're interested. Practise infront of the mirror. In fact, I think that practise infront of the mirror is essential to becomming a great communicator and to really master the art of covert hypnosis. Sit down in front of the mirror and try to look interested. When you feel that the mirror image is interested in what you have to say, remember the details: what is your posture like, your facial expressions, voice tone, muscle tension...

Use the same gestures as your prospect and similar speed of talking and you should do fine. Look them in the eyes, but don't stare.

Well, this covers the basics. there's so much more to say on this topic that I can't put it all here. More of the basics and some advanced techniques will be discussed here (<-- click on the link).

No comments: