Having gotten the opportunity to study abroad, you’re ready for a whole new experience that will change your life. The Next step is to figure out how to take advantage of the local culture while studying away from home and how it will affect your experience and mindset.
Undoubtedly, at first, you will feel lonely and will probably be worried about not being able to embrace the new culture quickly. But after a period, you would have developed much confidence and ready to experience new situations.
Building rapport is necessary for effective interpersonal communication in an academic setting.
Building good relationships with people you meet overseas can be of great benefit during your time there, and even after you complete your program. For a fact, in most cases, “it’s not about what you know, but who you know” that can help you put your best foot forward.
In this article, we will shed more light on the meaning of rapport. Its relevance and how you can build rapport while studying abroad.
What is Rapport?
Merriam Webster’s dictionary defines rapport as a friendly relationship marked by instant communication and mutual understanding. Hence, affinity is the positive, reciprocal relationship built between people. The moment two or more people gain a sense of trust for one another, rapport begins to develop. Sometimes, this rapport can occur naturally through similarities in behaviors and interests. However, taking a bold step in trying to know the importance of other people around you can bring about rapport.
For example, when two people realize they are interested in sporting activities, it triggers a conversation. Ultimately, a connection builds, and so does their rapport.
Below are some of the ways you can build a good rapport among the new people you find yourself with. Here we go-
1. Make an Excellent First Impression
Making a good first impression is essential for building rapport with new people. The first impression always lasts long, so consider your appearance, from the clothes you wear to the smile that radiates from your face. Doing this makes you look like a friendly person at first sight, and can build a foundation for rapport to begin.
2. Start Building a Network
The sole aim of starting your network is to expand your connections. To do this, start creating meaningful relationships with your colleagues – classmates, club partners, and peers. If it is an uphill task for you to meet different people, a simple act of saying hello, to the person sitting next to you in class can help boost your confidence. You can even try moving around during the semester and taking different seats in the classroom.
3. Join Student Clubs
Most universities and schools organize student activity clubs for several interests and hobbies. You can take leadership roles in such a setting to increase your network. For instance, if you’re enthusiastic about journalism, being a part of the student newspaper is a great way to connect with various faculties and departments.
4. Partake In Networking Events
Networking events such as workshops and seminars are great opportunities to expand your connections and initiate rapport with new friends, so always look out for invitations and announcements from your university’s student career centre.
Also, professional functions to be great places to find influential people who you can interact with. Such events give you a chance to relate with experts and leaders in your field of study.
5. Use Social Media to Your Advantage
Nowadays, it’s straightforward to start networking through social media. Social media platforms like WhatsApp, Twitter, and Instagram can be of help in this situation. Online groups are usually created for students in the same faculty or department to share information. You can initiate instant rapport via such platforms either by answering a question or posting a piece of relevant information.
6. Be Friendly
Being friendly does not just build rapport; it establishes trust. Being a helpful and helpful person naturally creates a warm atmosphere where people feel more comfortable around you. To build rapport, consider doing the following:
- Hold doors open for others
- Offer hand of assistance when people need them
- Speak positive things during the conversation
7. Understand the Culture
It is essential to understand where you are and who you’re around when trying to build rapport. You can still be yourself, but identifying how the culture around you works is essential as well. It would help if you understood that there is diversity in culture and that things cannot be precisely the same as where you come from.
Having a detailed knowledge of the culture can help you settle in and build rapport quickly. For this reason, start with the idea that you’re there to learn new relationships, ways of communication, and live interpretation. It is only in this way that you will be able to cope with the new culture.
8. Learn the Local Language
Learning the local language of the country where you’re studying is another right way to build rapport. For example, if you consider a place where English is the most used language, and you’re good at English, then there is no problem. But, if on the other hand, you’re in a country where the local language is entirely different from yours, you will need to learn the local language to be able to get along well.
Learning a new language in itself has benefits. It is always an extra boost to your CV at the end of the day.
Building rapport while studying abroad is not that difficult, after all, if you know precisely how to go about it. Not knowing how to initiate good rapport would mean that one may have to live in total isolation, which is not too good in an environment where someone is supposed to gather enough relevant knowledge from all available individuals. In this article, we looked into some of the ways that you can build a good rapport.
We hope you find this information helpful. And if we miss some tips, please leave your suggestions in the comments box.