Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Listen More Slowly...

“To listen well is as powerful a means of communication and influence as to talk well." - John Marshall

Do you ever feel like listening is a pain, time-consuming, or just something you are “not good at”? If so, you are likely driven, high-energy, and possibly slightly (I am being kind) impatient. That’s okay, it got you where you are today. If you want to connect further, learn more, and even offer value in how you converse from the listening side, please consider these tips for what I call “listening more slowly” to others:

-Take notes
-Consider the topic and not the person
-Imagine you have to “buzz in” before responding, so that you make a physical motion before opening your mouth
-Ask what or how questions for clarification (watch your tone) before offering your view
-Agree with a person and disagree with an idea (no attacking someone…especially by name)
-Share what you perceive the person is stating and ask if you are on-track prior to sharing an opinion
-Let someone know you would like time to process it (if you have nothing kind to say or you want other information)
-Remember, you are listening to learn, not just listening to respond

By even focusing on listening in a positive way (not saying “I’m just not a good listener”) , your efforts will pay off in improvement. Then, if you incorporate one or all of the tips/tools above, you just might hear something you really like!!

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