Develop Your Active Listening Skills…

Are you an active listener at work? Listening actively means you’re not just hearing what the person is saying, but also tuning in to their thoughts and feelings. Nodding along and repeating back your conversation partner’s main points is a good start, but it’s not enough to make them feel heard.

To become a better active listener, start by understanding your default listening style. Reflect and ask yourself, “How do I usually listen?” Are you task-oriented, focused on efficiency? Do you seek connection, picking up on the emotional elements of what your counterpart is saying? Or do you tend to be more critical? Be honest with yourself about your default mindset when you listen to others.

Then make an active, conscious choice about how to best listen in a particular situation. First determine the goal of the conversation. Then decide which listening mode is most appropriate: Are you and your counterpart trying to come up with an action plan? Or to better understand a particular situation or subject? Are you hoping to deepen your relationship? Or are you being asked to provide an honest critical assessment? True active listening entails listening with a clear intention in mind.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.