Unit Four: Building Emotional Intelligence: Interpersonal
March 2 2012
1) Good listeners Pay Attention
- You have to resist distractions and tune out noise.
- You can do several things to avoid listening errors caused by not paying attention:
o Before the conversation, anticipate the information you need. Make a list of your
o At the end of the conversation, check your understanding with the other person.
o During or after the conversation, write down key points that affect deadlines or work
What do Good listeners do?
- They prepare by analyzing PAIBOC the situation. Then they consciously follow four practices.
o Good listeners pay attention
o Focus on the other speakers in a generous way
o Avoid making assumptions
o Listen for feelings as well as for facts.
2. Good listeners focus on the other speaker(s) in a generous way
- Most of us miss meaning because we attend to our own internal monologues.
- We focus on factors incidental to the topic; or look for flaws.
- Good listeners focus on the message, not the messenger’s shortcomings.
- They concentrate on what’s in the message for themselves.
- Good listeners weigh all the evidence before they make a judgment.
- You can avoid listening errors caused by self-absorption:
o Focus on the content: on what the speaker says.
o Spend your time evaluating what the speaker says, not just planning your rebuttal.
o Consciously work to learn something from every speaker. 3. Good Listeners Avoid Making Assumptions
- Each of us brings our own perceptions to the communication process.
- Many listening errors come from making faulty assumptions, based on a natural tendency to
focus on our own ego needs, and to interpret the speaker’s meaning according to our own
- People from different cultures speak and listen very differently.
- Example: Superb salespeople listen closely to client questions and objections to better identify
and respond to the sticking points of a sale.
- You can avoid listening errors caused by faulty assumptions:
o Focus on the other person’s background and experiences.
o Query instructions you think are unnecessary. Before you do something else, check with
the order giver to see whether there is a reason for the instruction.
o Paraphrase what the speaker has said, giving him/her a chance to correct your
4. Good Listeners listen for feelings and facts
- Sometimes people just want to have a chance to fully express themselves: “Winning” or “losing”
- You can learn to avoid listening errors caused by focusing solely on facts by:
o Consciously listening for feelings
o Paying attention to tone of voice, facial expression and body language.
o Paraphrasing what the speaker has said, and acknowledging the feelings you are
o Not assuming that silence means consent and inviting the other person to speak.
What is active listening?
- Active listening involves feeding back the literal meaning, or the emotional content, or both.
- In active listening, receivers actively demonstrate that they’ve heard and understood by feeding
back to the speaker either the literal meaning or the emotional content, or both.
- After listening without interrupting, use these 5 strategies to create active responses: