Listening skills are a very powerful motivation factor.
Hardly any people are actually good at listening, being more interested in what they are going to say next. When you think about how many people you have met who can remember your name or what you said, you’ll find it is very few indeed. That generally seems to be the norm so when you do meet people who you think are good listeners, your feelings towards these particular people are usually more positive.
By that I mean you likely would place more trust and confidence in them. So because most of us find it very hard to listen, we are surprised by somebody who does listen and we tend to endow them with greater capabilities than they may possess.
This is the secret of motivation by listening. If we can learn to listen well, the people we listen to will be motivated and inspired by our attention.
Most salespeople consider themselves to be good talkers instead of listeners. You hear people saying: “He is a born salesman, he’s got the gift of the gab”. Many people believe that the speaker holds the power and that the listener is meek or docile. Actually you will find that the good listener has much more power in any conversation. The listener is able to gather more information than the talker and armed with information can then produce the desired result.
When two people are conversing, the one who really dominates the conversation is the person who is asking questions and listening carefully to the answers. When we want to motivate somebody to give their best effort, or to follow our direction, we will do so more effectively by listening to their responses to the situation.
Therefore the real job of the salesman is to listen carefully to his customers and understand their needs and concerns. Although they might ask you a few questions first, most successful salespeople will agree with this.
So what steps should you follow to create motivation by listening?
1. Repeat or rephrase so you can clarify the information given
2. Give useful information in return.
3. Listen for the emotions. Selling especially is often based on emotional factors more that objective facts.
4. Look people in the eye and make some reassuring gestures or tones to encourage the speaker.
5. Be careful not to distract the speaker – give them your full attention while they are talking.
6. Show that the discussion is important to you too.
Listening is an essential skill for making and keeping relationships. When you are acknowledged as a good listener people confide in you and trust you; as a manager of people or as a salesperson this is your route to success.