Improving Your Listening
Skills
How to be an Active Listener
Active Listening
► Good
listening skills are important in
 school
 the workplace
 day-to-day living
► Yet
most of us receive very little training in
effective listening.
► Take
the Effective Listening Quiz!
Good Listeners:
►
Minimize or remove any barriers to communication that may threaten their
effectiveness.
►
Physically face towards and pay attention to the speaker.
►
Listen for and verbally confirm the speaker's intent or purpose.
►
Confirm the content or the speaker's request (the who, what, where, when,
why and how).
►
Clarify the degree of importance of the request to the speaker. What is the
reason, need or urgency of the request?
►
Recognize the level of emotion demonstrated by the speaker.
►
Summarize and share their understanding of what is being requested.
►
Indicate the level of response they will be able to provide.
Factors That Hinder Listening
► Many
factors hinder our listening. Here are
a few examples:
 Daydreaming.
 Preparing our responses ahead of time.
 Thinking about other people, places or things.
7 Ways to Improve Your Listening
► Here
are 7 strategies and suggestions to help you
improve your listening skills.
 1.) Increase your listening span:
► Try
to resist the temptation to interrupt.
► Make
sure the speaker has had a complete chance to make his
or her point before you speak.
► If
you don't get the whole message, ask the speaker to repeat
what they said.
Ways to Improve Your Listening
► 2.)
Take time to listen:
 Don't put obvious limitations on your listening
time - the speaker will feel rushed.
► 3.)
Listen between the lines:
 Don't just listen to what is being said.
 Try to understand the attitudes, needs and
motives behind the words.
Ways to Improve Your Listening
► 4.)
Give your full attention:
 Nodding or interjecting occasionally to clarify a
point lets the speaker know you are interested.
 If the speaker pauses briefly, don't rush to fill
the silence.
 Use open-ended questions to encourage
elaboration.
Ways to Improve Your Listening
► 5.)
Restate the message:
 When you are sure that the speaker has
finished, restate the main points.
 This is a good organizing strategy for you.
 It also gives the speaker assurance that the
message has been received.
Ways to Improve Your Listening
► 6.)
Listen for ideas as well as facts:
 A good listener makes an effort to understand what the
facts add up to.
► 7.)
Don't monopolize:
 Resist the urge to dominate a situation or to feel that
you know everything about a situation.
 Be open to new ideas and allow the speaker to have his
or her say.
A Listening Quiz
►
True or False?
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1. The thief was tall, dark, and broad.
2. The professor turned off the lights.
3. A tall figure demanded the examination.
4. The examination was picked up by someone
5. The examination was picked up by the professor.
6. A tall, dark figure appeared after the professor turned off the
lights in the office.
7. The man who opened the drawer was the professor.
8. The professor ran down the corridor.
9. The drawer was never actually opened.
10. In this report three persons are referred to.
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Improving Your Listening Skills