“Most of the successful people I’ve known are the ones who do more listening than talking.”
―Bernard M. Baruch
Listening is an active activity, not passive as most people think.
So how do you get someone’s attention? It’s not by talking or by trying to impress people. The best way to get someone interested in you is to talk about what’s important to them. The biggest mistake most people make in communicating is talking about ME, MYSELF and I: “What I want …”, “Listen to me …”, “I would like this to happen because I…”, “I think you would like …”
Instead, turn your attention to the other person: “What are your needs?” “How can I help you?”Then listen. Always base the conversation around the other person. Talk about things that are important to him or her such as their family, hobbies or interests, what they are looking for. This is especially the case in business. Your job is to sell what they want, not necessarily what you think they need.
You can make more friends in twenty minutes than you can in twenty weeks by making them feel like you are interested in them.
There is a must-read book called ‘How to win friends and influence people’ by Dale Carnegie and he outlines dozens of important principles which he covers with stories to illustrate the point. Here are just a few of his principles:
1. Become genuinely interested in other people.
2. Smile – make a good first impression
3. Remember people’s names – it is ‘the sweetest and most important sound in any language’!
4. Be a good listener, encourage people to talk about themselves.
5. Talk in terms of the other person’s interests.
6. Make the other person feel important and do it sincerely.
This really is a must read book, go to our bookshop and order a copy! So this week be an active listener!