Would you consider yourself to be a good listener? Well, as per Edgar Dale’s Cone of Experience given all the listening that we do, we only remember 25 to 50 percent of what we hear. Shocking isn’t it? Listening might just be an attribute, but active listening is a soft skill that can help you solve problems, build and maintain relationships, and retain information such as procedures, instructions, and expectations. Active listening means being fully present and aware of what is being said. You need to pay complete attention to acquire information and truly comprehend what is being said.
A brief overview of active listening
Many people frequently confuse the physical act of hearing with the emotional art of listening. Hearing is a mere function of biology, but active listening must be acquired and developed. The good news is that it is never late to begin working on improving your active listening skills. With active listening, you can make a conscious effort to hear what someone is saying both verbally and non-verbally. The three As of Active listening include:
You don’t just listen with your ears, but also with your eyes. By observing someone’s gestures and body language, you look for congruence between their words, movement, posture, and tone of voice and establish the message loud and clear in your mind.
Importance of active listening in the workplace
People in the enterprise ecosystem need to listen at least as much as they need to talk. In fact, an organizational study submitted to the University of Southern Maine disclosed that employees want to be trained in effective communication and active listening is an integral part of effective communication. People long to get listened to, and when you are lending an ear, it can become easy to deal with conflicts and disruptions in the workplace. There are numerous advantages of adopting active listening in the workplace, including:
- Facilitating a supportive work environment with healthy communication
- Better work productivity. Active listening enables individuals to provide proper feedback. This can, in turn assure, that the internal communication is solid and employee productivity is kept at par.
- Easy conflict resolution. Not listening is one of the major debacles which leads to misunderstandings and conflicts in work environments. However, by actively listening to what others say, individuals can visualize themselves in different viewpoints and foster a culture of respect.
- Self-empowerment. When you practice active listening, you expand your perspective in different horizons and build your confidence to let go of your destructive agendas.
Active listening isn’t a one-day job. It is a technique that needs to be learned and practiced. The art of active listening must be consciously and experientially taught by leaders or by experienced coaches who know the significance of listening in the work environment. Leaders who listen well are perceived as people’s leaders. They increase the team’s creativity, generate more trust and instill higher job satisfaction. So, where are you when it comes to active listening?
Team Transformation offers coaching course that can help you become active listener and gain necessary skills to succeed. Visit our website to know more.