Developing Rapport: A Guide to Effective Communication and Lasting Relationships

Jeff Pady
Posted by Jeff Pady
| Sales Manager
Updated on
Published in About REW

Developing rapport is a dance of conversation– it’s all about the subtle moves, the rhythm, and the perfect timing. Beyond being just a transactional discussion, rapport building is about creating a space for communication and collaboration, fostering ongoing and more open communication. Mastering this skill is essential for real estate professionals to thrive in their careers.

Lowering Defenses

Building rapport naturally lowers the defenses of the person you're communicating with. An effective approach is to establish trust and credibility through research, which can be done using social media or, in the case of a customer, reviewing their past transactions and projects. This can unveil common grounds, encouraging engagement and fostering acceptance. It also shows you care enough about the conversation to have taken the time to look for relevant information.

It's crucial to gauge the atmosphere in the room. If you sense a shift in vibe, consider taking a step back. Offering control by asking, "How would you like to proceed?" allows them to take the lead, fostering a sense of comfort in your presence. This approach not only respects their pace but also establishes a collaborative dynamic.

Jeff Pady with Andrew Johnson & John Mark Mitchell of Mitchell Prime Properties at LRE®'s Annual Conference in Park City, Utah.

Asking Questions and Active Listening

Asking the correct questions is an art and should open the door for a productive exchange. It is crucial to approach questioning not as a means to showcase your knowledge but as a genuine effort to understand your client. Utilizing questioning also allows you to learn about the other party's needs and how to carry on a meaningful conversation.

Active listening is just as important as asking questions, if not more. Listening attentively to the other person, whether they are a client, colleague, or someone outside your professional circle, provides invaluable insights and cues. You have to really listen- not just so you have a quick reply, but actually hear what they're saying that may go beyond the words being spoken. 

Sprinkling in Humor

Laughter is a universal language, and a well-timed joke can be the icebreaker needed to form that connection. In moderation, it can ease tension and make conversations more enjoyable. Humor used effectively (and as naturally as possible) can help foster an engaging and relaxed space to work together.

Building rapport and enjoying lively conversations, Jeff Pady participates in LRE®'s Annual Conference in Park City, Utah.

Empathy and Personal Experiences

People appreciate the opportunity to talk about themselves, their interests, and their concerns, making it crucial to allow them to do so. It's equally important for them to feel that the person they're conversing with is attentive and genuinely listening. Taking note of these personal tidbits also proves advantageous, providing material for future discussions that demonstrates you listened and cared enough to remember. Small but thoughtful gestures like this go a long way in developing rapport.

Structured Interactions

Introducing structure to a conversation with low engagement can be a game-changer. Provide a roadmap by encouraging focused discussions on specific points, resulting in organized meetings. By giving clear direction and highlighting key areas, it is easier for the other person to share their thoughts and participate. Most of the time, structured conversations can turn unresponsive meetings into fruitful discussions.

Jeff Pady speaking with Nathan Mol of Liv Real Estate at Inman Connect in Las Vegas.


For us in the real estate world, relationships matter. Whether you're meeting with a prospective client or just chatting over coffee, remember building rapport is about making others feel heard, understood, and valued. 

Do you have other tips on how to develop rapport? I would love to hear your thoughts—don't hesitate to connect with me on LinkedIn!

Developing Rapport FAQ

What is the significance of building rapport in the real estate industry?

Building rapport in real estate is crucial as it establishes a connection and trust between real estate professionals and their clients. We aim to foster genuine relationships where both parties can collaborate and achieve their common goals.

Why is active listening crucial in building rapport?

Active listening demonstrates genuine interest and understanding, which are needed to build lasting connectins. You can also gain valuable information and address concerns effectively by actively listening to what others are saying.

Are there techniques for handling unresponsive clients?

Yes, in this situation, it's essential to read the room and adapt. Offering structure, such as proposing focused discussions on specific points, can turn unresponsive meetings into more engaging ones.

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