How to Build Rapport
In our last session we covered a lot. We began with setting your influential intentions because the main concept on influence is that you can't be influential unless you know what mark you're trying to hit. What the goal is. What the target is. And talking about specificity around that. Who is your mark? What do you know about your mark? When do you need this action to be taken by? What do you need your mark to say? What do you need them to do? What actions and or feelings do you want to illicit from them? So we start off with that and then we moved into what to look for in your mark because observation is the foundation of influence. So we talked about reading body language, even understanding a little bit more about your own body language and how to be influential just in your presence. And then we talked about what to listen for from your mark. So those key words, the visual, auditory and kinesthetic determining which one your mark might be, as well as the influential vibes that you...
get from your mark. The values, the identifiers, the emotions, the beliefs, the stories. So we have covered a lot ground when it comes to the observe part. Now we're going to move up a level and talk about the connection part. How to connect your mark and also connect the dots between your observations to the influential intention that you have set. So let's go ahead and talk about mismatched communication. This is usually where people go wrong when they're wanting to be influential. One person is speaking one language, they have one goal. And another person is speaking another language and because they have a different goal in mind. So what I wanted to open up with is sort of connect the dots from what we talked about yesterday and put a few things into practice. And what we're going, the first lesson that we're going to talk about is mirroring. So mirroring both their body language and their words in order to be more influential. So just this is kind of a graphic that describes or explains how if you obviously like with the values that we talked about before, that if he values money more and she's trying to persuade from the heart, it's not going to be as influential for him, and vice versa. So it's just a great visual to see how even though both people have the best of intentions it's just simply not going to match up, right? So one of the first steps, actually the first step I should say for all influencers is rapport. In, for people that study psychology to become therapists or councilors, they teach how to build rapport with their client. That's important because if you don't have rapport with your client then they don't trust you, they won't be open with you, and there will not be results, right? And that's not only true in therapy but it's also true surprisingly in interrogations. We have kind of a skewed perception of what an interrogation is, either within the military or also within the police department because of television, right? There's the good cop and there's the bad cop and there's I'm gonna pound your head into the table 'till you tell me where the bodies are, and all this craziness. Not the case. Now I will say of course that does happen out there somewhere in the world with bad cops, but for the most skilled interrogators, the ones that are really phenomenal with their communication, the first step is to create rapport with the suspect. Because if they feel that they can connect with you that they have that rapport and trust, they may not confess right away to the crime if they're guilty, but they might unwittingly share information that they otherwise wouldn't. Because what happens when you don't like somebody? They keep talkin' and you're not giving anything 'cause screw you dude, you're a jerk. I'm not talking to you. But if you feel like my friend I might relax a little bit. So it's the first step in therapy, interrogations. It's also the first step that the CIA agents use when turning an asset because you can't convince somebody to take actions against their country unless that person trusts you and believes in you and feels connected with you. 'Cause usually the agent is the one point of contact for that asset. They are the one liaison to the country, to the rest of the intelligence community. And it's usually, I would say almost always the first step. Rapport's the first step in negotiations. Because again it's about bringing down your guard. I think there's a little bit of a skew perception of negotiations 'cause it also can kind of feel more like a battle and there are people who teach that school of thought in negotiations. I do not come from that school of thought. I think that more amicable communication leads to more amicable results, rather than one person feeling like they want another person feeling like they've been beaten down. And it's also the first step in dating, yo. (audience laughing) You can't create a relationship, you can't create the spark unless you can create a sense of rapport. So rapport is key and in order to create rapport it means that you need to put all of those observations about that person into action. So let's start with what's the first action that you can take? I want to share a little bit about this new kinda discovery in neuroscience and the body language community is just all jazzed about it. I will say that there is a little bit of controversy or not 100% agreement as to what mirror neurons are or what they do, but there seems to be a pretty widespread, solid theory around it. There's plenty of testing that needs to be done around these. But basically these scientists in Parma, Italy found this part of our brain, what they later termed mirror neurons to pretty much light up and get active when they started seeing somebody taking an action and then it almost read by looking at the scans that they themselves were taking that action even though another person was doing that. And it was interesting and so they delve further into it and they began to kind of hypothesis well what could this mean? How does this serve us? How does this help us? And the first theory is that it actually really helps us in learning. So when a primate takes a rock and is able to break open like a coconut or something and get food, and another primate watches that, they learn from that action. So mirror neurons could actually be a strong part of that function. Also with mirror neurons they think that it's actually a great center for empathy. That why is it when we watch a movie and somebody's crying that we then start to cry? Why is it that when Derek Jeter hits a home run we go, yeah! Honey, you're not in the game. (audience laughing) You didn't score, you didn't participate, you're at home eating chips. You're not in it, so why are you feeling those emotions as if you're a part of the team? And why is it that sitcoms back in the day had a laugh track? Because when we hear it then we feel that emotion as well. It prompts us to it. So the theory is that these mirror neurons are kind of the main source for this interesting phenomena that we as human beings have. Even more interesting is that when we are in rapport with somebody, subconsciously we start to mirror each others body language. So I mentioned in the last session one of the fun games that my friends and I will play if nothing else is going on in the bar and we're bored is okay what's going on at the table over there? You know is that a first date? Is that a third date? Does she like him? Does he like her? And the quickest way to tell is how much they are mirroring one another. They will be in complete contrast of one another typically if they're in a fight. And if they are really into each other then they are practically just mirror images of one another. So if that happens naturally and subconsciously when we naturally feel rapport, can you then backtrack it and manufacture the sense of rapport by starting with the mirroring? And they answer is yes. So first of all I want everybody in the studio audience to freeze and not move. And if we can get the camera on the audience we're going to play a little bit of a mirroring exercise. All right so Clifton you stay still. And then I'm sorry say your name again.
Sruthy, now if you were to mirror Clifton, what would you do? You're fine, you're fine there's no wrong answer here it's all good. Phenomenal, right. So you're mirroring him and she is the exact reflection of him. Now if you crossed the other leg that still probably would've been fine. I saw the wheels turning.
I saw it, I saw it. And I appreciate the really well thought out--
It was very real.
Version of it is great, it was great So what she did so phenomenally well is she didn't try to match him exactly. Notice that like her pen is pointing on direction, his is the other. Like it's not a perfect representation but she's taking on his silhouette. And that's how I like to perceive mirroring as it's just the silhouette of a person. It doesn't mean that when they make a gesture then you go, okay! (audience laughing) It's not a mirroring exercise like if you've ever come from acting how you mirror one another and do that whole exercise. That's phenomenal and it's a great way to practice mirroring because what actually what that does, Chris why don't you come up and let's show this audience what this is all about. 'Cause I want you to see it so that way you can practice it at home. So we are going to, you go ahead and lead. So he's moving and I'm just following his movements and notice how it looks like we know exactly what the, and you can't tell which one's leading and which one's following. So the reason why this is a great exercise, thank you very much, is because most people focus on one part of the person. That exercise that he and I just did actually broadens your perspective and you are able to look more with your peripheral vision at the same time. It's a phenomenal exercise to practice observing body language. So you can see more things happening all at once, rather than okay I'm looking at the face, now the shoulders, what are the hands doing? It's not as broken up. You can see the whole picture. Okay, so how would you mirror Arianna? Fantastic. Now obviously we're kind of limited in our positions here as we're seated. But just notice how simple that is. You easily could have taken on that posture if you wanted to create rapport with her, without her noticing that oh I'm being mirrored right now, right? I mean that's a natural, that feels like a good position for you, correct?
Right. So when you mirror somebody's body language it's simply the silhouette of that person. Other things that you can mirror with body language, I love paying attention to people's proximity. Because when somebody leans in that means that they feel comfortable with you and they are engaged with you, and they feel rapport. What happens when you are not paying attention to all of that and you just wanna be comfortable in your chair and you lean back? Your not trying to dis the rapport that they're trying to create, you're just wanting to be comfortable. But because your mechanism isn't turned on and you're not paying attention to these signals, you have missed an opportunity to enhance the rapport. So when somebody leans in, lead in as they do. And it doesn't have to be the second that they do it. Delay time of a few seconds is totally fine, totally cool. Also if they put their, if they have their hands on the table or if they're leaning like this, feel free to lean like this or any version of that that feels normal and natural. Anything that gives the sense of that silhouette. Question?
Yeah, maybe you're gonna cover this later but what if you're trying to connect without who's not interested so they're leaning back in their chair, distancing themselves, you don't necessarily wanna mirror that, you wanna persuade them to change their rapport, so how do you incorporate mirroring to change somebody's attitude.
Great, so what you want to do is look for those significant shifts. Leaning back away from you isn't necessarily a dis. It could be that this is just their comfortable position, this is their space that they like to have. So paying attention to is this normal for them or is this a significant shift from their normal behavior? Then if you feel like you don't have that sense of rapport, totally fine. That's not a bad thing, that's just intelligence. That's just information that you are gathering. So don't be threatened by it and don't think like (gasps), all is lost. It's okay. Instead, so you realize like okay if you do get the sense that they're leaning away because you don't have rapport then that's all right, you know your next action step. Focus on building rapport. So focus on engaging them in conversation. Focus on getting them to talk about what puts them in a positive state. Pay attention to what makes them light up with the values, identifiers, all the things that we talked about last time, and once they get in rapport then you look for that significant shift of when they do lean in. Where most people go wrong and I'm so happy that you asked this question, where most people go wrong is they either don't see that they do not have rapport and they are so myopic about this is an influential meeting. I must have this influential conversation and so they just bulldoze through to their presentation about their services, about what they can offer. When they have missed the critical first step of building the rapport. Of just being present in the moment and connecting with that fellow human being. Keep in mind, like interrogators, they have a mission. I want this person to give me the evidence that I need, or the confession that they committed this crime. They don't go right in and say what did you do? That's a completely different conversation. Instead they focus on I need to build rapport with this person. So if you haven't met that step, that's okay, it just means you need to work on that step. Which is why sales meetings, it may not be just one meeting and you get the sale. Sometimes it is and that's wonderful, but if you jump straight to the sale in the first meeting and you haven't checked in to see if you have rapport, I'll lay down money that you're not going to get that client. But if you check in and build the rapport in the first meeting and then if you have a great time and go, oh my gosh, time just flew by we didn't even get a chance to talk. Can we setup another meeting for next week? That's okay. That's really good 'cause they're going to look forward to that meeting 'cause they had a great time with you. Rather then, oh we have to do this again? Because you spent the time to build that relationship with that person, so great question. Any other questions about, yes go ahead.
Just with like verbal communication if you're just on the phone, is that the same thing with the tone and the different phrases that you mirror with them?
Absolutely, absolutely. So you definitely want to match their tone so if they are a slow talker on the phone, I'm a fairly fast talker so if they're slower than I bring down my speed. If they're a fast talker and they talk really fast, then I try to amp up my speed to match that. If they speak in a deeper tone that I'll probably tap into the tone that I'm giving right now, but if they're a little bit more bubbly and everything than I'll smile more and I'll even get a little bit higher in my voice and oh my gosh yeah, that's going great. And there's nothing, and we'll talk about how to be an authentic chameleon, I know I've referenced it before, but I just wanted to touch on that. None of what I'm describing here is being false or being fake. It's simply accessing different parts of yourself in a conscious way. And we'll talk more about that later on. Do we have, how are things in the chat room? Any questions Chris?
Yeah you know we did have questions that were the exact same questions that were just here.
Love our audience.
So yeah they're reading your minds again. But yeah Jason Spencer had that same question about how would you mirror someone that's decided to stonewall you with a negative stance? Would that make you look negative? And we kind of already touched on that.
Right, right, cool.
Good questions though. So we're all on the same wavelength here which is great.
Love it. Jedi mind tricks, all right. Yes, first?
But if you notice that the person is laid back, that's their baseline, that's their normal thing. Is it appropriate for you also to be sort of laid back? Or is that, do you still wanna be a little bit more forward?
If you have come to the conclusion that leaning back is simply their baseline and this is a sign of comfort for them, totally lean back and mirror that because you are mirroring back that comfort. And if you do try to lean in and be more forward with your body language it might be off putting because they're comfortable and yet they're getting this sense of are you gonna take this action? Right? Okay, great question. Yes?
[Woman In Audience] I actually had the same question.
Oh my gosh, we're all mind readers. (muffled chatter)
I love it, I love it.