The most important skill in developing good relationships is the ability to build rapport with other people. Actually, this is probably one of the secrets to success in any field, since our relationships with others have a powerful effect on how we work and play with them. People want to feel that they can trust the people around them, to feel “in sync” with others, and if we can create that feeling in other people we will have a happy, successful life.
The simple rule to remember is this: people like people who are like themselves. This effect is so powerful, just mimicking their body language goes a long way in building trust at the subconscious level. Whether at a job interview or on a date, these techniques flat out work.
Researchers tell us that 90 percent of communication is non-verbal, and that means it takes place through our gestures, posture, movement, facial expressions and the like. The best way to use non-verbal communication is to match your body language to the other person’s. Observe the other person carefully. What are they doing with their arms and hands? Are they leaning forward or backward? Match their posture and gestures in a subtle way and you will instantly make them feel more comfortable.
Try this: Next time on a date, when your date takes a sip of a drink, you do that as well. If she tilts her head, you tilt yours. Follow her gestures with a few seconds delay so you don't look creepy.
Listen to the rhythm, inflection, and tone of the other person’s voice. Are they talking softly, almost whispering? Are they speaking slowly, or fast? Mirror the way the other person speaks and you’ll go a long way toward building rapport. Boisterous people like other boisterous people, and quiet people like other quiet people. So obvious, isn't it?
This is an aspect of body language, and a very powerful one. Facial expressions reveal our most intimate feelings, and by mirroring them you can establish a deep bond with people. Smile when the other person smiles, and you’ll make them feel like you understand them completely.