BUILDING RAPPORT THROUGH DOMINANT REP SYSTEMS
Mark Hamilton, a seasoned detective, slowly opens the door to the interview room. The witness sits leaning forward in a chair with her head in her hands. Normally, Mark bellows out his introduction to establish immediate control, but not this time. He enters the room without speaking, pulls a chair close to the witness, leans forward, and, in a barely audible voice, slowly begins, “I’m Detective Mark Hamilton….”
To establish rapport with this witness, Detective Hamilton knows that he needs to match her nonverbal behavior, or kinesics, by sitting down and leaning forward. When the witness begins to talk, Detective Hamilton listens carefully to her words and intentionally uses similar language. He also pays close attention to how she talks and matches her paralanguage (speech rate, volume, and pitch). In so doing, Detective Hamilton builds rapport with the witness and, hence, increases his chances of gathering pertinent information during the interview.
(extract from FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin)
Building Rapport is the process of developing that connection with someone else. Sometimes rapport happens naturally. Can we turn the “sometimes” ability to every new client or to every new employee, or to any candidates so that we can gather pertinent information as Detective Hamilton did?
In fact, Detective Hamilton is building rapport by matching language with the witness, one of NLP Techniques. How does it work?
People use language to communicate thoughts, the words they choose to reflect the way they think. An individual can use his/her Visual, Auditory, Kinesthetic representational systems to identify these experiences and communicate them to others. For example, a person whose predominant representational system is visual will say such as “I see what you mean”, “that looks good to me”, or “I get the picture”. On the other hand, a person whose preference is auditory will use language, such as “that sounds okay to me”…
By observing the eye patterns, the body language, listening closely to the choice of words that new clients, new employees or candidates use, we can use similar visual, auditory, or kinesthetic phrases to conforms our language to match their language.
What is your preferred representational system? How can you recognize the rep system of others so that you can use words from the same rep system and build an instant connection?
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