One of the biggest challenges that I have had in my sales career is truly listening. How many times have you been introduced to a new person and 3 minutes later you can’t even remember what their name is. Well, this has happened to me a lot. The second part of this first session revolved around Listening Techniques.
“People buy from those who understand them. They don’t buy because they understand you!”
Listening is a Skill and it improves with practice. We speak at a rate of 125-150 words/minute, but listen and understand 400 words/minute. After 1 day we forget 46% of what we have heard, 65% after 7 days and 79% after 14 days. When you listen well, you learn more. When you make your listening process visible to your customer, you communicate respect and caring.
How do you become a better listener? Here are 5 steps to becoming An Active Listener:
Pay Attention – Give the speaker your undivided attention, look at the speaker, listen to the speaker’s body language & put aside distracting thoughts.
Show that you are listening – Use body language and gestures to convey your attention, use verbal cues & make sure your posture is open and inviting.
Provide Feedback– Reflect by paraphrasing, ask questions to clarify certain points & summarize the speaker’s comments periodically
Defer Judgment– DON’T INTERRUPT and allow the speaker to finish
Respond Appropriately Be candid, open & honest in your response, assert your opinions respectfully & treat the other person as he/she would want to be treated
Lastly, my tip is to Stay in the Moment. Make sure you show true interest in the speaker and what they have to say.
VP of Sales & Marketing
*Copyright Sales & Marketing 101 Webinar (OHCA)