To be a good leader you must first learn how to listen. I looked online and found five ways to improve your listening skills!
- Be present and keep away from distractions.
- Try to show that you are paying attention by letting the other person know what else you are doing and that you will pay attention to them as soon you are done with the distraction (Texting, cell phone)
- Put yourself in the speaker’s shoes.
- Try to think like you know what the situation is like for the person speaking. They might be worried, afraid, nervous, joyful, excited, if you can act like the way they are speaking then you can really connect with them.
- Let the speaker know that you really were listening to them by keeping track of the main key points they are saying.
- Let them know that you understand them, and if you don’t understand something be sure to ask them questions to clarify their points.
- Practice active listening.
- Focus on what the person is currently saying instead of figuring out how you are going to respond to them.
- Practice giving feedback
- Show curiosity.
- Act like you are interested in their topic.
- Make it sound like you want to learn more about what they are saying
Here’s a challenge/quest for you to do if you are interested in practicing good listening skills:
- Go ask a friend or classmate how they spent the weekend.
- Pay close attention to their body language, keep note of what they are saying and see if you can be in the same shoes as they are. Repeat some key points of what they are saying. Show curiosity by asking more questions. Record yourself and see how the conversation went!
- Go to a restaurant, ask a stranger how they like whatever it is that they are eating.
- See if you can connect with them and show curiosity! Be sure to record yourself so you can review how the conversation went! Review your conversation and see what you could have done better to improve your listening skills.
- Repeat the steps daily and see how you can improve your skills. Keep note of what you could have said to make the conversation better. Ask yourself, why did the person scolded you or why did they praised you?
Good luck and thanks for reading!
*It helps to do additional research about the topics that the other person is talking about so that you can have an arsenal of ideas to bring up into the conversation.
- *Picture above is from google search images