More here. Here are a few of the areas in which we can match and lead to build rapport:
4 Information handling
6 What stops us from listening properly?
Effective and flexible influencers are also good listeners. Listening with care is a rare skill. Many people degrade the quality of their listening – or stop altogether – by:
Be aware of the extent to which you might do some of these, and practise focussing on the other person. If you truly make the other person more important than you, it will be easy not to fall into these traps which are all ways in which we make ourselves more important than the other.
7 Listening to understand
Listening has a purpose beyond the development of rapport, of course. We listen in order to understand the other person. With the best will in the world, though, we don’t always understand what they mean, so we need to communicate our need to understand more. Of course, sometimes we think we do understand, but we don’t. So, it is useful to deploy the following techniques in any conversation:
8 Clarifying: this is used to deepen understanding, to check that you have the right understanding, and generally to gain more meaning from the speaker’s words.
9 Questioning: you can use questioning when clarifying, but it is also useful exploring issues, developing ideas, generally moving one or both parties forward.
10 Paraphrasing: this is repeating back in your words what the speaker has said. Very useful because, if the speaker doesn’t recognise what they have just said, then clearly you’ve not grasped it accurately (but be careful –often clarifying is actually needed first).
11 Summarising: this presents ideas from different parts of the conversation, in brief, showing the links between them. It is useful to summarise in order to describe the position someone is in, or where the conversation has got to.
12 Know yourself: understand how you appear to others and recognise your own unhelpful ‘hot-buttons’ and work on eliminating them.
13 Ask questions
14 Listen actively
Put your main effort into trying to understand the other person. Influencing goes wrong because we put all our effort into expounding our own views.
© 2011 Jeremy Marchant Limited . by Jeremy Marchant . uploaded 25 june 2015 . image: Free digital photos
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