four components of effective listening

Listening well is a skill and one many of us have yet to master. It is a weakness of mine so I am trying to develop this critical skill. Fortunately Ambassador Enterprises LLC where I used to work not only places a great value on this skill, they also teach you how to listen.

One tool they have is the four components of effective listening. (click here to read Ambassador Enterprises’ entire article on this subject)

  1. To hear is to focus all of your senses on what the speaker is communicating, making it as easy as possible for them to say what they mean and to have confidence in your full attention.
  2. To understand is to comprehend what the speaker means. This has nothing to do with evaluation or agreement; that comes later. You should be able to communicate back what they said to their satisfaction.
  3. To consider is to evaluate what difference their input should make in what you feel, think, or do.
  4. To give feedback is to expose how I will consider their input and to express appreciation for it. This can be done immediately, even before you have had time to thoroughly consider all of the implications of the input. Later, you can expose how you have incorporated it into your thinking and what you have done or will do as a result.

Start incorporating these four components into your listening and see how much more effective you become.

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