When it comes to job candidates and new hires, you can’t overstate the value of rapport.
If you’re an extrovert, creating rapport may come naturally. But it’s not a comfortable process for many people, particularly anyone who is introverted or doesn’t conduct a lot of interviews. So how can you create rapport even if it’s outside of your comfort zone?
The Role of Rapport in the Hiring Process
You may not realize it, but establishing rapport is an essential skill you use in many areas of your personal and professional life. Rapport is powerful. In the Building Materials environment, you might need to establish rapport with a fellow co-worker on your team, to network with your peers, or to help new employees fit into their new role and among new coworkers.
Building Rapport Early
In the hiring process, rapport is critical during interviews. Everyone’s a little nervous at the start of an interview. So you’ll want to spend the first few minutes establishing rapport. By doing so, a more natural and authentic conversation can take place, leading to a better understanding of the candidate's personality and qualification. Better interviews happen when everyone is comfortable.
Finding Common Ground
Rather than engaging in generic small talk about weather, or weekend plans, the answer could be right on their resume or application. Look there for things you both have in common, things that can help you create a connection. Perhaps you’re both from the same town, perhaps you love the football team of the university they graduated from, or perhaps you’re both volunteer youth soccer coaches. Look for anything that gives you a casual entrypoint for comfortable conversation and common ground.
If you can establish rapport over shared interests, you’re going to get much better results from the interview. And during these times of tight labor, candidates are interviewing you as much as you’re interviewing them, so being able to build rapport goes a long way to increasing their comfort with you and your company.