Friday, October 14, 2011

What Good Listeners Do

From The Trusted Advisor - - what do good listeners do that make them good listeners?  They:
  1. Probe for clarification
  2. Listen for unvoiced emotions
  3. Listen for the story
  4. Summarize well
  5. Empathize
  6. Listen for what's different, not for what's familiar
  7. Take it all seriously (they don't say, "You shouldn't worry about that")
  8. Spot hidden assumptions
  9. Let the client "get it out of his or her system"
  10. Ask "How do you feel about that?"
  11. Keep the client talking "What else have you considered?"
  12. Keep asking for more detail that helps them understand
  13. Get rid of distractions while listening
  14. Focus on hearing you version first
  15. Let you tell your story your way
  16. Stand in your shoes, at least while they're listening
  17. Ask you what you've thought of before telling you what they've thought of
  18. Look at (not stare at) the client as he or she speaks
  19. Ask you how you think they might be of help
  20. Look for congruity (or incongruity) between what the client says and how he or she gestures and postures
  21. Make it seems as if the client  is the only thing that matters and that they have all the time in the world
  22. Encourage by nodding head or giving a slight smile
  23. Are aware of and control their body movement (no moving around, shaking legs, fiddling with a paper clip)
Things that will not get you in the Listening Hall of Fame:
  1. Interrupt
  2. Respond too soon
  3. Match the client's points ("Oh, yes, I had something like that happen to me.  It all started . . .")
  4. Editorialize in midstream ("Well, that option's a nonstarter")
  5. Jump to conclusions (much less judgments)
  6. Ask closed-end questions for no reason
  7. Give you their ideas before hearing yours
  8. Judge you
  9. Try to solve the problem too quickly
  10. Take calls or interruptions in the course of a client meeting (it seems so obvious but watch how often it happened)

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