This article throws light upon the eight tips for improving listening skills in the organisation. The tips are: 1. Be More Open Minded in the Organisation 2. Develop Empathy in the Organisation 3. Listen Actively in the Organisation 4. Observe Nonverbal Clues in the Organisation 5. Improving Sending Skills in the Organisation 6. Simple Language in the Organisation 7. Organize Writing in the Organisation 8. Understand Audience.
Listening Skill: Tip # 1. Be More Open Minded in the Organisation:
Stereotyping, ethnocentricity, rigid frames of reference, and selective listening can all become barriers to comprehending the intended message of a sender, so one of the first things to do to enhance listening skills in the organisation is to spend time developing a greater awareness of personal tendencies in the direction of any of these problems.
Once you have a better awareness of these tendencies, you can monitor and control them in your organisation during conversations.
Part of the reason for direct and conscious attention to this area of listening and speaking is that most people speak at about 120 words per minute and yet can listen at about a rate of 1,000 words per minute. This creates the opportunity for the mind to wander or make judgments about what we are hearing from others. These tendies can distort what is heard and how it is interpreted in the organisation.
Listening Skill: Tip # 2. Develop Empathy in the Organisation:
Once personal tendencies have been examined, the next step is developing empathy. Empathy is identifying with and understanding the other person’s feelings, situation, and motives in the correct manner. To some extent, this requires thinking about the situation of other people in exact manner. What are their feelings relative to the topic at hand? What are their motivations? Why are they talking about what they are?
These and other questions can help you enhance your understanding of the personal context of the message being sent to any organisation.
Listening Skill: Tip # 3. Listen Actively in the Organisation:
The next step to improving communication is to take actions to ensure that the receiver hears and understands what the sender is trying to communicate in any organisation. In conversations, making eye contact is good way to help speakers feel comfortable and convinced in any situation, that you are sincerely interested in understanding what they have to say.
It is important to focus more on the content of the message send than the style of its delivery. Even if people in the organisation are not choosing the best words or are making grammatical errors, they may have something quite valuable to communicate. Focusing on style over substance can cause the value of the message to be missed in the organisation.
To make sure you understand what is being said, ask clarifying questions from others. Also, even when you think you have understood the message, it is a good idea to paraphrase, that is, restate what you think the message is. This can be put in the form of a question or statement in the organisation.
For example, in the organisation you could ask, “So are you saying that…?” or you can put it more directly by saying something such as, “What I understand you to be saying is ”
Listening Skill: Tip # 4. Observe Nonverbal Clues in the Organisation:
As we discussed earlier in this chapter, nonverbal cues are critical to effective communication in the organisation. Listening more open-mindedly arid actively to the words is only part of the task in the organisation.
You also need to concentrate on observing nonverbal clues in the organisation. In cross-cultural settings, this means that you need to remember more that a nonverbal clue or gesture can have different meanings in different cultures in any organisation. There is little substitute for learning about the nonverbal clues and gestures of the culture of those with whom you will be interacting in your organisation.
Listening Skill: Tip # 5. Improving Sending Skills in the Organisation:
There are many situations in which you will be the sender of a message in the organisation. Developing better sending skills in the organisation can enhance effective communication.
Listening Skill: Tip # 6. Simple Language in the Organisation:
One of the first things a sender can do to enhance communication is to simplify the language in the message. Clearly, what is simple in the organisation will vary depending on the audience. Simplifying may involve eliminating jargon that may not be familiar to all members of all audience or in own organisation.
It may also involve choosing more sufficient and active words and shorter sentences in the messages. Perhaps the best clue for spotting complicated and passive language is excessive use of prepositions in messages. The more prepositions in a sentence, the higher the likelihood that the language could be simplified and the message could be stated more directly in your organisation.
Listening Skill: Tip # 7. Organize Writing in the Organisation:
Executives consistently complain about the poor writing skills of new managers in their organisations. Their complaints lie not in spelling or grammar mistakes, though clearly these should be eliminated, but in the lack of logical thought processes they deal.
As a manager, you are likely to write more reports and memos than you may want, and the effectiveness of those written communications will have an important impact on your career not only in present organisation but also in future organisation. Consequently, developing good writing skills is vital to being an effective manager in the organisation. Nothing substitutes for practice in the organisation.
Listening Skill: Tip # 8. Understand Audience:
Perhaps the single best thing a sender can do to enhance the effectiveness of communications is to understand the audience on any part.
For example, consider the following questions, which come from the material we have covered thus far in the chapter:
What is the direction of the communication (up, lateral or down) and does the receiver have any expectations concerning this type of communication?
Is the communication formal or informal, and how should it be structured to have the intended impact on the receiver?
Are there expectations from the receiver about the explicitness or implicitness of the message you want to send?
Does the receiver have any biases for or against certain modes of communication (e.g., for or against e-mail, face-to- face conversations, and so on)?
If you do not understand the person or persons to whom you are sending a message, it is almost impossible to answer these questions correctly. Knowing your audience (i.e., the receiver or receivers) is critical to improving your sending skills on any matter.
Knowledge of the audience is particularly important in cross-cultural settings, and the following is some lists to improve cross-cultural communication in the organisation:
1. Study the general principles that apply to all types of inter cultural communication in the organisation.
2. Learn about the fundamental characteristics of the other cultures with which you will be working in the organisation.
3. For high-context cultures, learn as many details in advance about the target organisation(s) and their specific individual representatives in organisation.
4. For high-context cultures, use at least a few words or phrases in the listener’s language wherever possible.
5. For high-context cultures, be especially careful about body language and tone of voice wherever possible.
6. For low-context cultures, organize written communications so that the major points are immediately and directly stated wherever possible.
7. Study and respect communicators’ preference for greater degree of formality, especially compared with the typical Indian approach of casual informality.