3 Tips to Become a Better Listener

a woman smiles while coworkers behind her work on a problem

Communication is key when it comes to effectively managing relationships with colleagues and clients. While the things we say certainly matter, learning to listen effectively is likely the most crucial part of the equation. Learning to be an active listener will not only make you a better communicator overall, but it can make you stand out from the crowd of other highly skilled finance professionals.

Of course, being a listener is not a natural skill that everybody has. That’s okay. It can be learned. Here are a few helpful tips to keep in mind.

Talk Less

It’s tempting to talk more to showcase your communication skills. However, talking less can actually help you hear the other side and then speak with intention. Let people share their whole ideas before you offer your input. Not only is this courteous, but it will provide you the full picture before you offer up your insight.

Fine Tune Nonverbal Communication

When you are actively listening to someone, what you do with your body matters. You should try to maintain comfortable eye contact but avoid staring. You should also avoid distracting behavior such as fidgeting or tapping your foot. Try to smile throughout the conversation and lean slightly into the conversation so that the other person can fully see that you are participating.

Ask Questions

When you do speak, make sure that you are asking plenty of questions. Not only will this help you create a quality response to what is being said, but it will show the speaker that you are listening and interested in what they have said. You may also want to ask some questions that show that you’ve been listening. For example, if a speaker has already mentioned certain details of a position, then you shouldn’t ask about those details again. Instead, you could ask for more information to better understand specifics.

Better Listener Overview

Effective listening is critical in all industries, but especially in finance. Make sure you are putting in the effort to become a listener that people want to communicate with.

You may also enjoy, The Pitfalls of Bad Leadership Communication

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