Chapter 5

Establishing Rapport for Effective Communication

In This Chapter

arrow Developing your rapport-building skills

arrow Emphasising empathy for better relationships

arrow Co-operating for mutual benefit

I’m sure that you can recall situations when you experienced great rapport with another person; perhaps you refer to those times as being ‘in sync’ or ‘on the same wavelength’. This situation usually occurs when you share similar beliefs, values and interests. The conversation flows easily, you feel understood and you relate well with one another in a relaxed, respectful way.

The Oxford English Dictionary defines rapport as ‘a close and harmonious relationship where there is common understanding’. When you’re in rapport with other people, you feel a sense of connectedness and responsiveness based on familiarity and trust, allowing you to establish agreeable relationships with shared understanding. Communication is easy, trust and understanding are paramount, and though you may not agree with the other person’s point of view, you can understand their perspective and they can understand yours.

At home and in the workplace, rapport is vital for easier, more straightforward and ...

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