Are you aware that the art of listening is tied to effective leadership? Do you know that listening skill has been identified as one of the top skills employers seek in both entry-level and promoted employees?
According to stats by the International Listening Association, “Spoken words only account for 30-35% of the meaning. The rest is transmitted through nonverbal communication that only can be detected through visual and auditory listening.”
#1. What Listening Is All About?
Listening is a skill. It is the capacity of an individual to accurately receive, interpret and relay information provided by another during a conversation.
A lack of this essential piece in a communication process could result to strained relationships and breakdown in communication which could be very costly both in Business or Social context.
For example, a research revealed that physicians interrupt 69% of patient interviews within 18 seconds of the patient beginning to speak. As a result, in 77% of the interviews, the patient’s true reason for visiting was never elicited.
“The most basic of human needs is the need to understand and be understood. The best way to understand people is to listen to them.” – Ralph Nichols
#2. How Should We Listen?
We should listen not with the intent to reply, convince or manipulate. But simply to understand the other party’s perspective. This doesn’t mean that you agree with the person but that you fully understand their view emotionally and intellectually. This form of listening is void of judgement, criticism or personal opinion. And entails an active engagement in rapt attention with ears, eyes and heart open for feeling and for meaning.
#3. Why Should We Listen?
According to Ralph Nichols, “The most basic of human needs is the need to understand and be understood. The best way to understand people is to listen to them.” Listening is a powerful skill because it helps us to connect more with people and understand their philosophies.
More importantly, it lends us with sufficient information or data to work with, instead of projecting and assuming our own thoughts and motives. We can only work with people productively if we understand what really matters most to them.
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Picture Credits: Google