Listening Skills

Learn to listen

Learning to Listen is an effective communication assessment for management development training that measures listening skills, increases awareness of effective listening behaviors, improves listening skills and promotes active listening for better personal and work performance

Learning to Listen Second Edition

Statistics show that people remember only half of what they hear, even moments after they’ve heard it. Surprising? The fact is that although most of us like to think we’re good listeners, almost everyone needs to improve their listening skills. Research shows that when people improve their listening skills, there is an increase in morale, safety, quality, sales, and productivity, as well as a decrease in unnecessary turnover and absenteeism. In addition, employees with effective listening skills are more productive with new technologies, and organizations that listen to clients are rewarded with a competitive advantage.

Learning to Listen is a communication assessment that focuses on both the visible and invisible aspects of listening behavior and measures listening skill in 3 dimensions: Staying Focused, Capturing the Message, and Helping the Speaker. The training assessment also provides individuals with their Overall Listening Effectiveness Score.

What separates the Learning to Listen assessment from the competition? While other similar communication assessments identify listening style, Learning to Listen measures listening skills. Focusing on concrete behaviors allows participants to immediately take action on their listening strengths and weaknesses and create an action plan for improvement. The result is employees who are better equipped to handle customer complaints, negotiating contracts, manage teams, and more.

Learning Outcomes: Identify listening skills strengths and areas for improvement. Define what it means to listen and understand the importance of effective listening skills at work. Understand common barriers to effective listening. Identify behaviors that are associated with effective listening.Improve listening skills.

Theory and Development

The Learning to Listen assessment was developed in response to specific requests from our clients for training resources on listening. While some customers told us that they expected to teach listening as a stand-alone topic, most said they intended to present listening as a component of a broader skill set. We specifically designed Learning to Listen to be flexible enough to serve both applications.

Learning to Listen measures listening skills rather than listening styles for a specific reason. First, a skills approach is more practical. Participants are more likely to put new skills to use right away. Secondly, skills are more concrete than styles. Participants will find them easier to relate to. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, skills are more changeable than styles, so participants will have a better chance of acting on the self-knowledge they get from completing this instrument.

Uses for the Assessment

Learning to Listen can be used as the centerpiece of a stand-alone workshop on listening skills, or it can be incorporated into a more comprehensive training program on customer service, team building, decision making, selling, supervising, negotiating, or interpersonal skills

Customer Service: Listening patiently and helping the customer fully express him or herself gives employees the extra insight they need to answer questions or solve problems in a way that truly satisfies the customer.

Team Building: When team members are able to establish and maintain the habit of listening to one another, they are better able to share ideas, solve problems, and make the best use of each team member’s unique talents.
Decision Making: Making the best possible decisions requires knowing all of the available information. Having the reputation of being a good listener helps others feel comfortable sharing pertinent information.

Selling: Listening to a customer’s needs before talking about the features and benefits of the organization’s offerings provides information to salespeople so that they are better equipped to tailor their sales presentation to what really matters to the client.
Supervising:Listening with compassion and respect enables managers to develop a strong rapport with their employees. It also opens the door for employees to share their ideas, suggestions, and concerns – all of which can contribute to a more effective organization.

Negotiating: Listening with an open mind while keeping emotions in check is one of the best ways to find clues as to what terms the other party will and won’t accept.

Interpersonal Skills: Listening without judging is valuable trait that improves interpersonal relationships and builds trust

How It Works:
Learning to Listen starts with a self assessment that takes individuals approximately 15 minutes to complete. Individuals respond to 30 statements about listening behavior during one-on-one conversations. Scores reveal skill level in each of the 3 Dimensions of Listening (Staying Focused, Capturing the Message, and Helping the Speaker), and individuals also discover their Overall Listening Effectiveness Score.
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If you intend to use the Learning to Listen in a classroom training session, we recommend you allow approximately 1 hour for interpretation of scores, topic discussion, debrief, and action planning. The Learning to Listen Facilitator Guide includes everything you need to lead a successful training session from comprehensive background information and activities, to reproducible handouts and even a professional PowerPoint presentation. The Facilitator Guide also offers an easy-to-follow workshop outline that expands Learning to Listen into a 2-hour program.
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Use this tool for your next team building event:Click on HRDQ to learn more about this tool.

Effective Listening Skills

Effective Listening Skills can help anyone become a better listener. Using a five-step process, individuals learn how to eliminate barriers to good listening, improve communication skills, maximize productivity, and build interpersonal relationships.

Available in 3 separate versions as a classroom training program, e-learning program, and e-book, Effective Listening Skills is part of the Reproducible Training Library, a full suite of unlimited-use content that’s downloadable, customizable, and reproducible.
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Quotations about Listening

Wisdom is the reward you get for a lifetime of listening when you'd have preferred to talk. ~Doug Larson

We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we speak. ~Epictetus

Lenin could listen so intently that he exhausted the speaker. ~Isaiah Berlin

Listen or thy tongue will keep thee deaf. ~Native American Indian Proverb

Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen. ~Winston Churchill

The young people who come to me in the hope of hearing me utter a few memorable maxims are quite disappointed. Aphorisms are not my forte, I say nothing but banalities.... I listen to them and they go away delighted. ~Andre Gide

I tell you everything that is really nothing, and nothing of what is everything, do not be fooled by what I am saying. Please listen carefully and try to hear what I am not saying. ~Charles C. Finn

No one really listens to anyone else, and if you try it for a while you'll see why. ~Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook, 1966

Home is where you can say anything you like cause nobody listens to you anyway. ~Author Unknown

The most important thing in communication is to hear what isn't being said. ~Peter F. Drucker

If animals could talk, the world would lose its best listeners. ~Robert Brault,

My wife says I never listen to her. At least I think that's what she said. ~Author Unknown

The most precious gift we can offer anyone is our attention. ~Thich Nhat Hanh

Don't worry that children never listen to you; worry that they are always watching you. ~Robert Fulghum

Lots of people talk to animals.... Not very many listen, though.... That's the problem. ~Benjamin Hoff, The Tao of Pooh

The only valid censorship of ideas is the right of people not to listen. ~Tommy Smothers

I guess I've spent my life listening to what wasn't being said. ~Eli Khamarov, America Explained!

Children have never been good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them. ~James Baldwin

No one is listening until you fart. ~Author Unknown

Women like silent men. They think they're listening. ~Marcel Achard, Quote, 4 November 1956

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