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Listening Skills:

Listening Skills are critical for effective communication, building relationships, resolving conflicts, making informed decisions, fostering innovation, and driving business success. By cultivating strong listening skills, professionals can enhance their effectiveness, promote collaboration, and achieve their goals in the dynamic and fast-paced business world.

Stop talking so much!

To stop talking so much is one of the most basic things required to become an accomplished listener. 

During conversations in the workplace, observe who is doing most of the talking, is it you or someone else? 

  • The first thing to do is to notice yourself; this primary awareness is a good start. 
  • The business world is already full of speakers, being a listener will make you stand out. 

After awareness comes a possible array of options. First is simply to decide to stop talking so much. 

This may be achieved by asking questions such as: 

  • “What are your views?” 
  • “What is on your mind?” 

Another method of passing conversation is by acknowledging with a smile or a nod, this encourages others to talk.

Create a culture of trust:

  • Effective and meaningful communication exists when there is trust. 
  • To become a skillful listener, you have to build trust. There are different ways to establish trust and the most common is to become trustworthy. You achieve this by always putting trust and integrity above everything else.

Listen for disrespect:

  • When a conflict arises, there are usually two things that come about. First is the issue, and second, which is not always talked about, is the feeling of disrespect that people get from another. 
  • As long as there is a feeling of disrespect, conflicts are rarely solved. The feeling of disrespect must be first addressed before the issue. It is because this feeling is the seeming cause of most conflicts.

Listen for mutual purpose:

  • Lack or loss of mutual purpose is the second most common causes of conflict. Few conflicts will be resolved unless there is a foundation that will reinforce or re-establish this. Listening for mutual purpose is important in the success of both business and personal relationships.

Be slow to disagree, argue or criticize:

  • There is always criticism, argument and disagreement in the workplace. But when you engage in such behavior you cannot hear what the other person is trying to say. With this behavior you continuously try to get your point across and become less of a listener. Skillful listeners will allow others to speak and say what they need to say.
  • Hearing things you don’t like may be hard. It takes discernment and practice to be open to such things that are difficult to hear. Being slow to disagree, argue or criticize will eventually prove best for everyone involved.

Inspired by
Mark Brady