Listening should always be part of your communication check-list. It is always important to discuss “listening” as a part of communication strategy. Instead of talking to people about all your stuff and finally understanding that their need is different and fine-tuning your pitch, in a hurried way, you can first listen and tailor your pitch to what they want to listen. Listening should come before talking. That’s the trick of successful communication.
Much more training and practice is required for proper listening. Even very effective speakers, struggle to listen.
Here are some behaviours that I have jotted down that prevent us from listening:
- Mind Reading : Predicting what the other is really thinking
- Rehearsing : Practising your next points in your head
- Scoring Points : Relating everything that you hear to your own experience
- Cherry Picking : Listening for a key part and then switching off
- Daydreaming : If you are faster in understanding than the speaker
- Labelling : Trying to categorize before hearing
- Counselling : Not able to resist giving advice
- Duelling : Countering a person’s verbal advances with parries of your own
- Side-Stepping Sentiment : Countering expressions of emotion with jokes
Try listening more and see how much you can get. You will be surprised.
Happy Listening!!! Feel free to comment if you have some more to add.