ADAPTABILITY-Can You Connect With Others?

Connecting with People

 

How well you speak the other person’s language?  How well you get on that person’s wavelength?  There are some people, as professional as they are, as knowledgeable as they are, as helpful as they are, that simply just rub you the wrong way.  They’re just not your kind of people.

All of us are different, yet all of us are the same.

 

I remember when I moved from New York City to San Diego, I found a whole different world. I treated people in San Diego according to The Golden Rule – I treated them as I wanted to be treated – as a New Yorker wanted to be treated. I found out that the way people did business in San Diego wasn’t the way people did business in New York City. And even though I was doing things competently with knowledge and with ethics, it was my approach that turned people off. It wasn’t what I was asking them to do that prompted them to “dig in their heels.” It was how I was asking them.  I just came on too strong.  It wasn’t too strong in New York; it was too strong in San Diego.  Too fast-paced.  Just a whole different approach.  I had to get on their wavelength.

 

We all listen-make what you have to say worthy of that effort.

So, it’s important that you learn to vary your presentation, to vary your pace, to vary your language based on the type of people you’re speaking to.  I mean, if you’re calling on somebody who is a bottom-line, time-disciplined, fact-oriented, busy, results-oriented individual, are you going to go in, spend ten or fifteen minutes “chit-chatting” or socializing trying to get to know that person?  Obviously not!  If you’re calling on somebody who’s a very friendly, outgoing person who likes to talk about sports and likes to talk about family and likes to talk about just various things about business and wants to get to know somebody first and you walk in and bottom-line everything with little or no social talk, do you think that might irritate that person?  Definitely!  So, you have to size people up and get on their wavelength to create chemistry so that person will say, “Hey, you’re the type of person I want to do deal with on a long-term basis.”

 

This whole approach is called ‘adaptability” – your ability to change your approach, to change your strategy, depending on the situation or the person you’re dealing with. That’s how you really connect with people quicker, deeper and longer.

 

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Effective Communication Skills-Do You Know How To Listen?

Effective Communication Skills-Common Sense Listening Tips

We all do it.  We get excited about a topic, and forget to pay attention to those we are speaking with.  Or we get so wrapped up in voicing our opinion we fail to listen for others.  Remembering some simple rules will improve your communications, not to mention your relationship.

Let others tell their own stories first. By letting them speak first, you save time. When their interests are revealed you can tailor your discussion to their particular needs, goals, and objectives and can avoid useless, time wasting conversation.

It is impossible to listen and talk at the same time. Don’t rush to say your piece. Why not wait until the speaker’s point is made? Then you will have your chance.

Listen for the main ideas.  A good listener tries to guess the points the speaker will make.  Then get feedback.  If you guess correctly, your understanding is enhanced, and your attention is increased.  If you are incorrect, you learn from your mistake.

Be sensitive to your emotional deaf spots.  Deaf spots are words that make your mind wander off.  Everyone is affected by certain words so it is important to discover your own individual stumbling blocks and analyze why these words have such a huge effect on you.

Fight off distractions.  Train yourself to listen carefully despite external distractions. Through practice you can improve your power of concentration and block out external and internal distractions and attend totally to the speaker.

Don’t trust your memory if you hear data that may be important.  Take brief notes because listening ability is impaired while you are writing.  Write notes in words and phrases rather than complete thoughts.  All you need is something to jog your memory later in the day, and then you can recall the complete content of the message. 

React to the message, not the person.  Don’t allow your mental impression of the speaker influence your acceptance of his/her message. 

Try to appreciate the emotion behind the words (vocal and visual) more than the literal meaning of the words. 

Use feedback. Do not only hear what you want to hear. Check to see if the other person wants to comment or respond to what you have previously said.

Listen selectively. Critical messages may be hidden within a conversation. Listen to weed out “the garbage-in” so there is less “garbage-out” in the conversation.

Relax. When another person speaks, try to make him/her comfortable and relaxed. Give him/her a chance to speak his/her mind. You’ll get your turn.

Try not to be critical, either mentally or verbally, of the other person’s point of view. Keep those emotions in check. Allow the speaker time to finish his/her thought. You might find that what you were initially going to disagree with wasn’t such a bad idea after all.

Listen attentively. Face the speaker, lean slightly forward. Establish gentle, intermittent eye contact.

Create a positive listening environment. Try to have that conversation in a place that is conducive to effective listening.

Ask questions. Ask open‑ended questions to allow the speaker to express his feelings and thoughts.

Be motivated to listen.  Try to keep in mind that there is no such thing as an uninteresting speaker, only disinterested listeners. The effort to listen is worth, you’ll see.