When small business proprietors build rapport with clients, they communicate easily and become highly influential. Customers will trust you and take your recommendations seriously. Charisma boosts your likability and helps create lasting friendly relationships with clients, which will add value to the business for years to come. Individuals with this quality often seem energetic, confident, authentic, and passionate. Other people want to spend time with them and become their friends. Some business owners believe that they can't be charismatic because they're not skillful, attractive, or intelligent enough. The truth is that anyone can work to develop greater charisma.

1. Listen and Empathize

Genuinely listen to what every client has to tell you. Don't jump to conclusions and assume that you know what people will say. Don’t pass judgment while listening. Instead, practice reflective listening. Always give a customer enough time to fully describe his or her situation. Show interest by recalling details and asking relevant questions. Try to express a clear understanding of clients' needs, difficulties, or problems. Remember names and say them frequently.

2. Eye Contact, Smiling

Be sure to smile at clients when they enter your business or smile at you. This promotes friendlier interactions, especially if you also greet people enthusiastically. Make eye contact as you shake customers' hands and speak to them. However, you shouldn't look at someone's eyes for more than 15 out of every 20 seconds. This can cause a person to feel anxious or question your motives. Keep in mind that certain groups of people usually prefer to avoid eye contact, such as Asians and Native Americans.

3. Be Positive, Humorous

A charismatic person often speaks in an upbeat, optimistic way. It helps if you also possess a good sense of humor, but you can compensate for a lack of wit by maintaining a positive attitude. Try not to complain or overemphasize problems. An interesting anecdote may help change a client's mind when the person doesn't agree with you. For instance, someone might demand that you use a cheap, flimsy building material. Rather than arguing, you could tell a story about a homeowner who was dissatisfied with the consequences of this choice.

4. Be Yourself

You can't develop charisma or build rapport by pretending to be someone else. People will notice the lack of authenticity. To avoid anxiety and speak with confidence, you must feel comfortable with yourself as a person. Don't try to appear perfect; clients may assume that you're hiding something. Feel free to admit a minor flaw, and consider using a little self-deprecating humor. Most customers will appreciate your honesty unless the disclosure brings your competence into question.

5. Improve Your Reputation

You'll find it more difficult to establish friendly relationships if clients find negative information about you on the Internet. What appears when people search for your name or brand? Harsh reviews and critical news stories can undermine trust by planting suspicions in customers' minds. This isn't always fair; detractors may work for competitors or have unreasonable expectations. Fortunately, there's an effective service that counteracts negative material. It's called online reputation management. Experts remove harmful content or use convincing positive messages to "bury" it. This can improve both online and offline relations with your customers.

If you succeed in developing charisma and rapport, you may find that reciprocity becomes the norm. Customers will respect, believe and pay attention to you, and you'll do the same for them. After you achieve this, it's crucial to continue taking steps to maintain the relationship. Remember to express equivalent interest in the words of long-time clients and potential customers. Keep asking questions, find new ways to cooperate, and show that you always have time for each individual.

Author's Bio: 

Rachael Murphey is an entrepreneur on topics of business, leadership, and personal success