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Presence Through Listening

Updated: Nov 18, 2021

Look familiar? Listening ... and doing something else.

We get about 270 newspapers worth of data a day. Most customers, co-workers, and bosses have tons of information. People need someone to help them solve their needs/challenges and that could be through an actual solution or support.

But, it’s hard to help solve a problem when you don’t actually know what it is.

In the age of chatbots and contact center menus, we just want a human to understand us and make valuable recommendations.

From a professional standpoint, the single best way to establish yourself as a credible, trustworthy expert is to invest in mindful listening.

Mindful listening means being 100% present with the person you are listening to. This means using all your senses to understand and comprehend what they are saying verbally and non-verbally. Most of the time, we are thinking about what we’re going to say next, and this causes us to miss subtle cues in the way people communicate their ideas.

For instance, my client was working with a global team. During the calls, he would multitask. Well, three months in, their project started going sideways. On the calls, everyone committed to the timeline, but there were two people not meeting their deadlines, and it was jeopardizing everything. So, he called together a meeting to have a tough discussion, and it was the first time he was fully present. What he experienced made him fully believe in mindful listening.

When asking for these individual’s commitment, they were saying “yes” but shaking their heads “no.” In high-context cultures, people avoid saying no to save face. No is considered rude, impolite, and alien to group harmony.

After implementing mindful listening, my client was able to understand that he was actually getting all the information he needed the whole time, but he’d wasted three months by not being fully present.

When salespeople do this, prospects can sense it. By observing auditory, visual, and physical cues when listening to the prospect’s words, a salesperson can truly begin to understand the plight of their prospect and put themselves in the buyer’s shoes.

When bosses do it, employees feel connected to them. By listening to the words and feelings that a co-worker or employee is conveying in their language, tone of voice, facial expressions, and body language, we can work more collaboratively.

In my program, have a specific exercise I run clients through that forever changes the way they listen.

So, when you’re on the phone or in a meeting with a prospect, ignore the distractions around you, throw out the script, stop worrying about what you’re going to say next, and really pay attention.

If you want to learn more, sign up for my next program to increase your productivity by forever changing the way you listen. (Also, you will learn how we create neurotransmitters that help us connect with others.)


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