- Mar 11, 2018
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Learning how to Listen carefully before reply and reaction
Business is about selling goods and services. This can never happen except a relationship has been built. Building relationships is about listening and reacting to information communicated properly. Service delivery on the other hand will be erroneous with the customers request is wrongly interpreted. This means it is important to listen carefully before replying and reacting. Wrong response to an interaction can be misinterpreted as being unfriendly or not interested in doing business. Listening is therefore important to do business, build business and keep business relationships.
Listening is an act of paying attention to an encoder. It means making a conscious effort to hear. This can be made possible by maintaining focus and concentration. Listening has been handled with levity over time.
Some Harvard University students revealed what they thought about listening
- “Frankly, I had never thought of listening as an important subject by itself. But now that I am aware of it, I think that perhaps 80% of my work depends on my listening to someone, or on someone else listening to me.”
- “I’ve been thinking back about things that have gone wrong over the past couple of years, and I suddenly realized that many of the troubles have resulted from someone not hearing something, or getting it in a distorted way.”
- “It’s interesting to me that we have considered so many facets of communication in the company, but have inadvertently overlooked listening. I’ve about decided that it’s the most important link in the company’s communications, and it’s obviously also the weakest one.”
A good listener will make communication possible when the speaker’s information is acknowledged and decoded.
Neglecting the listening skill has caused a lot of damages to individuals and large organizations. Not listening can cause assumption of message, misinterpretation of message, missing out key points in a message and ignorantly adding to the message. These are close to the actual message but it is not the actual message. Missing out the action word in a sentence totally alters the message.
Many administrative instructions has been applied wrongly. This reduces the productivity of an organization. It tarnishes the image of a business and makes business unprofessional.
REASONS FOR IMPROVING LISTENING
- To establish interactive relationships in profession.
- To secure the continuity of an organization.
- To ensure concise and precise event documentation.
- To avoid misinterpretation of information.
- To optimize customer care services.
- To sustain customer relationships
- To increase productivity in an organization
- To dissipate strong feelings.
- To increase the other person’s confidence.
- To avoid doing the wrong thing.
- To avoid giving a wrong response.
- To make the other person feel important and recognized
- To be sure you are both on the same wave length.
- To be on target with one another.
- To be sure you are both focused on the same topic.
ARE YOU A GOOD LISTENER
In active listening, receivers actively demonstrate that they have heard and understood a speaker by feeding back the literal meaning, the emotional content or both.
A good listener consciously listen for feelings, pay attention to tone of voice, facial expression and body language. A good listener won’t assume that silence means consent.
Signs that show that you are a good listener include:
- Ability to paraphrase the content.
- Ability to mirror the speaker’s feelings.
- Ability to state your own feelings.
- Ability to verify given information for clarification.
- Ability to offer solution to the given problem.
TEN AIDS TO GOOD LISTENING
- Paying attention to the speaker
- Avoid making assumptions
- Focus on the speaker in a generous way
- Listen for feelings as well as facts
- Maintaining an emotional balance
- Spend time evaluating what the speaker says
- Consciously aspire towards learning something from every speaker.
- Be able to interpret the facial expression, voice tone and body language of the speaker.
- Analyze your understanding with the speaker at the end of every conversation.
- Have a proper orientation about your organization.
Listening takes place in four stages. They are perception, interpretation, evaluation and action. The process can however be obstructed by barriers such as mental and physical barriers. Mental barriers include inattention, pre-adjustment, frame of reference, closed mindedness and pseudo listening. Physical barriers include hearing impairment, noisy surroundings, speaker’s appearance, speaker’s mannerisms, and lag time. To ensure good listening an audience will have to stop talking, work hard at listening, block out competing thoughts, control the listening environment, maintain an open mind, listen between the lines, paraphrase the speaker’s ideas and capitalize on lag time.