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What is listening? And moreover, what is effective listening? Of course, we all listen carefully, making mental notes of all those things we find interesting. If that's the case, stop! Right now, at this moment, as you are reading this, ask yourself an honest question, are you assimilating, what you are reading? Often we skip words, while listening, or reading. To make this worse, we listen with prejudices and biases which often breaks trust. Effective listening in the workplace is an important part of building trust and strengthening business relationship. Complete understanding of the term is what makes successful entrepreneurs, mentors, and leaders.

Developing Effective Listening Skills

Conscious Decision
The first step towards being an effective listener, is to take a conscious decision to listen to those around you. Once you've decided to listen effectively, then there's no looking back.

Body Language
Body language is an integral part of everything you do. Hence, it plays a crucial role in making you an effective listener in the workplace. When the speaker addresses you, make a confident eye contact. Sit in a position that you are most comfortable in, so that you don't fidget. Changing your emotions, appropriately to react to the listener's story, is the real test of effective listening in the workplace.

Share is Caring
Back home, when parents try to advice kids, the advice is straight away trashed. But in a workplace, the opposite is most likely. Considering, the similar age brackets of co-workers, the troubles of the speaker may seem more realistic to you, which makes you responsible to advice or at least pep-talk your colleague. If you are a good boss, don't probe too much into the matter, as not all employees are comfortable talking to their bosses. Let them befriend each other, to share, and care for one another. This will also help in building teams and raising team spirits.

Connect
It is important that you try to connect with the speaker's problems. Striking a connection, means talking about the problem or trouble, or reacting to a good news as though it's a part of your life. Give listening a personalized touch to establish a trustworthy bonds with your colleagues.

Impact of Effective Listening

Non-Verbal Communication
Effectively listening in the workplace is a form of non-verbal communication. Clich├ęd, as it may sound, silence speaks more than words. When you make a conscious decision to listen to somebody, you do it with full, undivided attention. Your complete attention and concentration, towards the speaker's subject, communicates your concern to the speaker. In this way, effectively listening in the workplace, serves as a non-verbal communication tool. Corporate organizations are demanding and challenging. Most of us cope up with the pressures, however, it is always a listening ear, that provides us with motivation, care, concern, and understanding to carry on.

Intelligent Emotions
Developing listening skills through activities is a way of fortifying emotional intelligence at work. This works with the logic of 'a friend in need, is a friend indeed'. If your employees can establish strong relations with each other, it's going to benefit your organization. Those of you, who think that your employees may conspire if they mingle too much, then let me tell you, boss, you are wrong! Hearing out one another, working together, sharing load, being a helping hand, and walking the extra mile, will go a long way in making your organization successful.

There are many factors to effective listening strategies. However, focusing with clarity is extremely important. Hope these techniques help you in building a reliable workforce, which ensures many successful years.