Listening Skills

8 ideas to increase your ability to listen:

  1. Maintain steady eye contact with the speaker.
  2. Sit or stand tall.
  3. Give the speaker encouraging cues like: “I see” “Tell me more” “That’s interesting”
  4. Remove physical barriers. Stand or sit near the speaker.  Turn off your cell phone or pager.  Relocate to a quieter setting if necessary.
  5. Paraphrase to demonstrate effective listening. “If I understand you correctly…. “ then allow the speaker to confirm your understanding or offer clarification.
  6. Demonstrate empathy
  7. Keep an open mind.  You can’t learn less; the opportunity for more is always present.
  8. Listen for intent as well as content.   Explore beyond the words spoken by probing for the real meaning.