Learning to listen
By definition, listening means to pay attention. It does not mean hearing – which refers to sound – but means actually focusing on what’s being said. The trouble is that many of us only listen some of the time. The rest of the time, we’re only hearing.
Practicing these three listening techniques builds strong social skills and boosts professional relationships. Developing good listening skills leads to better customer satisfaction, greater productivity and more innovative work.
1. Show that you’re listening. Nodding frequently or smiling shows the speaker that you’re engaged. If you notice yourself losing focus, remind yourself that every conversation deserves your full attention.
2. Don’t interrupt. Even if someone is saying something that you don’t agree with or don’t understand, avoid interrupting. Continue to focus and once the speaker has finished, pause to formulate your questions or rebuttal.
3. Avoid distractions. Whether you’re on the phone, online or in person, don’t split your attention between the speaker and something else. Multi-tasking hints that you’re uninterested.
In a mentoring relationship, listening is a crucial skill to put into practice.
Media: Media Download