What did you say?
It is a slippery slope. Most of us rate ourselves as great listeners, yet customers who were surveyed said that their sales representative doesn’t listen to their needs more often than not.
I was sure that I was a great listener, after leading over a hundred courses on communication and presentation skills. I found big gaps – which over the years have cost me sales and had strained personal relationships.
So no matter what your background, once again, as in with determining your value proposition – check your assumptions with the real world.
As your good customers and clients if they think you could improve in your listening skills. Ask loved ones. Determine if you not just hear, but turn what you hear into actions.
Some people have a big issue with apologizing, and I never have. I have found that looking a customer in the eye, or talking candidly by phone, I can apologize directly for a whole host of things if something has gone wrong. It takes nothing from me, and shows good listening skills if you’ve heard a change in their tone or demeanor. Asking questions can remedy this as well.
A good site for more on listening can be found here. Post your comments on ideas for improved listening.