How well do you connect?

How well do you connect?
July 24, 2023

What keeps us from connecting with others? Maybe you are a manager and can’t quite connect with a person on your team. Perhaps you are in sales, and meeting a prospect feels awkward. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could immediately connect with everyone we encounter?

Some people make connecting with others look easy. They have a secret! They quickly consider a person’s pace. Does this person move faster or slower? Does the person they are speaking with have pauses while speaking? Do they make statements or ask questions? Successful connectors adjust their pace so it is comfortable for the person they speak with.

Good connectors also quickly determine if a person is task-oriented or people-oriented by considering their body language and tone. Is it more serious, formal, and controlled, or are they excitable, friendly, and easy to read? Effective connectors do not do the same thing for everyone. They adjust their style to foster a connection that creates a comfortable relationship for everyone.

If you want to connect with others, listen to them first! Do you find yourself interrupting? Have you thought about how people feel when you interrupt? The best thing you can do right away to connect with others is to avoid interrupting.

Do you use phrases like, “That reminds me . . .” or “Let me tell you about . . .” If you do, that also tells people you are not listening. You were thinking about what you wanted to say, not what they said.

Are you uncomfortable with silence in a conversation? Not immediately speaking gives you time to listen and think about what you want to say. Silence is okay!

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