“How to Build Rapport in the Workplace” on Toggl, May 8, 2019.
“The most valuable form of power is relationship power,” adds Alan Zucker, Founding Principal of Project Management Essentials, LLC. “It is the most enduring and the one that will produce the best results.”
“When we develop rapport and a connection with our customers, colleagues, and employees we develop trust,” he adds. “When there is trust, we know that we can count on them and that they have our best interest in mind.”
4. Be prepared to be patient.
In the most fortunate of circumstances, you find someone that you click with and rapport is seemingly effortless and instantaneous. But in the majority of cases, be aware of the fact that building rapport will take some time and patience.
Additionally, it’s important to recognize that rapport isn’t something that you can set and forget. You need to maintain it by continuing to be trustworthy, dependable, and invested in other people’s interests and lives.
“Like any relationship, rapport requires care and feeding or it can fade. It requires a commitment of effort and an interest in the other person. Most of the time it’s going to require some work and an investment in time,” says Zucker.
While it is possible to rebuild rapport and relationships, it’s far easier to never jeopardize them in the first place.
Build Stronger Bonds at Work
There’s no denying that rapport is important. But in order for it to be truly effective, you need to be genuine. “Don’t try to be inauthentic,” adds Zucker. “People can spot a feigned interest in a second and that is worse than not even trying.”
Rather than making a half-hearted or disingenuous attempt to connect with someone, use the above four tips to identify some common ground and move forward from there. To recap, those strategies include:
- Observing others to pick up on their interests and behaviors
- Asking plenty of questions
- Providing your undivided attention
- Being patient