While many might think it is a pretty basic skill, I have found that listening is a common developmental opportunity amongst the executives with whom I work. Think of it – a lot of high achievers are results-oriented drivers, and with that often comes high urgency, impatience, and sometimes a certain degree of stubbornness. Thus, developing better listening skills is an important way for many individuals to become more effective both on-and-off the job.
Last month, I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Ann Brown of The Network Journal, on some practical strategies for being a more effective listener. Here is the article:
Being a good listener is vital in business. Listening is an important skill in business because it is an essential communication tool. People are so busy thinking about what they will say next, that they fail to listen effectively. Those who can listen well can develop better relationships and eliminate misunderstandings and miscommunication,” explains Frederick J. Goodall, publisher of Mocha Dad and Mocha Man Style.
But for some being a good listener doesn´t come naturally. It is a skill that has to be learned and practiced.
First, determine if you are a poor listener. “Do people tell you you don’t listen? Even if the feedback is from your significant other, and you are prone to dismiss it, at least consider the possibility that this quality may manifest itself at work as well,” says Patricia Thompson, author of “The Consummate Leader: a Holistic Guide to Inspiring Growth in Others…and in Yourself” and president of Silver Lining Psychology.
Another sign of poor listening skills is if you are constantly interrupting people. “Often, people do this unconsciously, so monitor yourself in your interactions with others. If you notice that you tend to jump in before they finish their sentences, you can be sure your listening skills could use improvement,” says Thompson.