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Active Listening Skills
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During conversations where important information is discussed - passively "taking it all in" and then attempting to provide input or to carry out directions just does not work very well. For these situations, the listener must become actively involved in the listening process. Active listening is a way to improve relationships with both internal and external customers as well as a means to reduce costly errors that result from misunderstandings.

Upon completion of this course you will be able to:

  • Understand the difference between passive and active listening and know when to use each
  • Use acceptance responses to communicate to the customer that he/she is being heard without interrupting the flow of thought
  • Repeat critical elements of the conversation verbatim to ensure understanding
  • Paraphrase what the customer says to confirm understanding
  • Ask clarifying questions to get a full and clear understanding
  • Organize and summarize key elements of the conversation to assure understanding
  • Get feedback from the customer throughout the conversation to confirm accurate understanding of the communication
  • Utilize active listening skills to strengthen the bonds of trust and rapport
  • Know that until the customer feels that his/her situation is clearly understood, he/she will resist hearing solutions
  • Use transition sentences to introduce a different point of view in order to help the customer save face, avoid arguments and increase acceptance

Course Content

Definitions

  • Passive listening
  • Active Listening

Active Listening Skills

  • Use Acceptance Responses
  • Repeat
  • Paraphrase
  • Ask Clarifying Questions
  • Summarize

Transition Sentences

  • Save face
  • Provide support for current thinking
  • Transition to a different point of view

When and When Not To Use Active Listening

Course Length: 3 to 4 Hours


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