Humpty Dumpty definitions and what you can do about them

Why can’t people just say what they mean? Ambiguity and confusion, resulting in wasted effort, frayed tempers, and increased costs, are common in all business environments. Misunderstandings can be bad enough when you’re face-to-face with colleagues – but the problem gets even worse when technological, linguistic and cultural communication barriers are added to the mix.…

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The joy of listening

One of the best things about listening is the pleasure it brings – both to the person being listened to, and to the listener. There’s a real joy for me in eliciting new information: information that my interviewee didn’t know they knew. ¬†People are absolutely fascinating, once you get beyond the everyday conversational niceties and…

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Quieten the voice inside

What distracts you from listening fully to another person? For many people, it’s the ‘voice inside’ – their own internal commentator. This voice may be distracting for all kinds of reasons – it might be offering useful-sounding suggestions, putting forward opinions, criticising, or even talking about something completely different, such as “what’s for supper?” But…

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Listening at your best

One of the best ways to improve your listening is to have a clear goal – to know the state you’re aiming for. Listening well (like most other things) is different for every individual. So take a few moments now to get familiar with what listening well is like for you. Think of a time…

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Listening Tip: Use their language

People’s words are important to them. Even when we speak the same language, there are differences in the way we use words – professional groups have their own jargon, young people have their fashionable phrases and so on. In fact, once you explore the detail, each person uses language in a unique way, and the…

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