We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we speak
Listening is a tool or skill almost forgotten by managers, yet unless one receives a message as intended, he or she cannot make use of the information transmitted effectively. To be an effective communicator, you must be skilled at sending and receiving information. Ability to receive through careful listening, and consume the information will depend upon one’s ability to listen to the message transmitted. Every day, managers are faced with magnitude of information waiting for their attention; letters, reports, emails etc. We advise that, you read the messages carefully with the intent to capture the theme of the message, perceive the sender’s feelings, avoid assumptions, ask questions when you don’t understand.
In verbal communication, the techniques for active listening are;
- Paraphrase by restating what was said in your own word
- Summarize by pulling together the main points of the speaker
- Challenge speaker to think further, clarifying both your and their understanding, however suspend judgement.
If we were supposed to talk more than listen, we would have been given two mouths and one ear.
– Mark Twain