Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Do You Practice The Art Of Listening?

Dale Carnegie, the author of How To Win Friends And Influence People, was right when he said people really only want to talk about themselves... And that one of the best ways to earn the respect of others is to listen! So here I was thinking I was all that having read his book - not by a long shot! Could you do a little more listening? As for the sales and marketing profession, this is a critical skill! Sales reps constantly in the pitching mode usually end up as just noise to prospects. As far as the product side goes, I know too many Product Managers who still forget to listen to users to really understand their needs. Lose the echo chamber people!
But there is help... Ever heard of active listening?

  • Be other-directed; focus on the person communicating
  • Follow and understand the speaker as if you were walking in their shoes
  • Listen with your ears but also with your eyes and other senses
  • Be aware: non-verbally acknowledge points in the speech
  • Let the argument or presentation run its course
  • Don't agree or disagree, but encourage the train of thought
  • Be involved:
    • Actively respond to questions and directions
    • Use your body position (e.g. lean forward) and attention to encourage the speaker and signal your interest

Born from the educational process, this idea of active listening is all about engagement. Do you do this? Do you do it well? 

No comments: