Business Mentor: Perfecting the Art of Listening

Armando Bartolome

Posted at Mar 23 2019 08:02 AM

Communication is a two-way street. One talks and the other listens--it’s that simple. Or is it? Are you engaging in real communication? As the boss of your own business, you need to have strong listening skills. 

Effective communication is essential for the development of any organization. An entrepreneur needs it to perform his duties. Its benefits cannot be overlooked.

Communication helps the entrepreneur to know how a job is done and if an employee’ performance can be further improved. It helps identify alternative approaches or strategies. 

Through proper communication, people can voice out their grievances. Management can also explain the policies of the organization, and smooth out any misunderstanding, thus improving the morale of the team. 

As an entrepreneur, you need to stop and listen to what your employees want to tell you. Try to spend more time listening than talking. 

Although you may know a lot about your business, sometimes you need to listen to others to see if mistakes have been made. 

We should also think about how others perceive the way we do things. And through listening, this can be achieved.

For a business to become successful, a businessman needs to have effective communication skills – both listening and talking, but more importantly, attentively listening to what the other party is saying. 

Unless both parties know how to effectively communicate, they are bound to disagree or worse. Here are some tips for effective listening.

1. Always try to listen attentively to what the other person is saying. It is hard to create a good relationship with anyone if you just got used to nodding at anything that the other person is saying without truly understanding what has been said. When you pay close attention to the speaker, it gives an assurance to the speaker that you put a value to what he is telling you.

2. Make eye contact. When you do this, it makes the speaker feel that you are interested in what he is saying. It helps you focus on what the speaker is telling about.

3. Get rid of your mobile phones and other distractions. It shows disinterest if you keep on checking your mobile phone while someone is talking. The same goes for checking the time while the other person is talking. It shows how you are uninterested with the things that the other person is talking about.

4. Wait for the proper timing to reply. You cannot just butt in anytime you want because the speaker may find it offensive if you interrupt him in the middle of what he is telling you. Let the other person finish before you speak.

5. Ask for clarification on certain things that you need to understand more. Do not hesitate to ask a question (but of course, keep it in a friendly tone). This will make the other person feel that you are genuinely interested in what he has shared with you.

6. Encourage the speaker to express himself. Sometimes, there are people who feel uncomfortable talking about sensitive topics, particularly an employee to his employer. Instead of firing out sarcastic comments, ask questions that can help you have a better understanding of what is being told to you.

7. Provide feedback. Not every information that is shared with you is something that you would agree with. If you disagree, say it politely. If you agree, make your feedback as interesting.

A lot of us just appear to be listening when in reality, our mind is off somewhere else. Whether you are talking to your parents, spouse, employer or any other person, wouldn’t it be much better if you actually listened to them? 

God gave you two ears and one mouth for a reason. Becoming a better listener lets you become an instrument of providing positivity to people’s life, as well.

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For more information, you may contact Armando "Butz" Bartolome 
by email: philfranchiseguru@gmail.com 
or https://www.facebook.com/philfranguru/
His website is https://www.gmbmsglobal.com