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                 Communication Skills in the Workplace:
                            Rapport Building Strategies

  In the workplace, it is important to know how to improve
communications skills.  Having good communication skills may
result in increased job motivation, teamwork, productivity, and
happiness in the workplace.  
   Learning how to build rapport is one element of developing
good communication skills.  Learning to build rapport may also
help one to learn how to make friends in the workplace.
  In the workplace, rapport can be viewed as the development of
trust, understanding, respect, and liking among employees.
  How can we build rapport in the workplace?  There may be
several ways to build rapport.  Below are four ways that I believe
may help to build rapport.  These can be viewed as a brief list of
rapport building techniques and a brief list of communication
skills.    
  Communication skills training in the workplace could involve
these four ways of building rapport.

1.  Demonstrate Good Listening Skills

   
People may generally like others who make an effort to listen
to what they are saying.  It may demonstrate that someone is
caring.   People may demonstrate good listening skills by making
statements that reflect that they understand the person's
statements, and by asking relevant questions.

2.  Express Gratitude

   
A simple way that may build rapport is to simply say "thank
you," or state that you appreciate someone's work.  Even if the
person is only completing their work according to what is
expected of him or her, it still would be a good idea to thank the
person or express your appreciation.  Expressing gratitude may be
a way of demonstrating that you understand and care about
another person.

3.  Express Empathy

   
Many people may wish to feel that they are understood and
that others can feel what they feel.  Expressing empathy is
another way to demonstrate that you care about and understand
someone.  You can state that you understand how the person
feels and you have also felt that way.

4.  Express Humor

  
Expressing humor may be another way to establish or build
rapport. Expressing humor may lead to the perception that you
are easygoing and friendly.  It may increase liking and trust, and
people may feel more comfortable talking to you.
PRACTICAL IDEAS