I am sure many of us think of commercials about dropped calls and bad reception when we hear or say “Can You Hear Me Now?” but what about when you have a clear connection, open communication/dialogue and you still find yourself questioning if they can hear you? Maybe what we need is to be more focused on listening vs hearing. We are bombarded with sounds all day; things we are aware of, things we tune out, things maybe others can hear but we can't but if you sit and listen, you may hear a lot more.
“Listening is paying close attention to what a speaker is saying, and being able to absorb information and ask questions later. A good listener learns from what he/she is hearing.”
I find myself thinking about this topic as I reiterate process/procedure/plans to a hiring manager I have been working with recently. I know that I covered all of this when we first talked, again through a summary and again now through follow up. So I started wondering, “did he hear but didn’t listen to me?” And of course, I also think, is there a better way I can convey these messages so that someone receiving the message actually listens?
Here are some tips that I came across which can be utilized in all aspects of our daily lives, both while sharing information and being given information:
- Step 1: Tune in.
- Step 2: Decide what it means.
- Step 3: Paraphrase to confirm understanding.
What I can take from this, is to re-think how I present my information and try to change how it will be received, knowing all members of the “audience” might receive the same message differently. Also, there may be a need to dig deeper, in certain cases, into the receiver’s understanding, did they listen vs just hear?
So next time someone asks “Can you hear me now?” you can say “not only do I hear you but I am also listening”.
This post was written by Erica Levenson. Erica has been on the Syngenta RPO team for just over 5 years now. She started on the team as a Sourcing Specialist, then moved to Sourcing Team Lead and then moved to a Recruiter position about 2 years ago. She is originally from NJ but currently lives in South Florida with her 3 yr old daughter.