The reason why we have two ears and only one mouth is that we may listen to more and talk the less. –Zeno, Stoic Philosopher

Listening is a virtue very few have been able to master. I am working towards it. I should master it before my death, hopefully. 

Listening helps in gathering information to the best: A mentoring session, customer meeting, or team discussion. It helps in understanding the other well. It helps with precise information gathering and not missing out on any aspects.

I have been advised with some techniques in improving my listening skills, sharing it here:

  1. Listen patiently until the counterpart has finished speaking. Do not interrupt. 
  2. Avoid distractions while the conversation is going on. Snooze your cellphone.
  3. Don’t make assumptions. Don’t be judgemental or show disapproval either verbally or non-verbally while the other person is speaking.
  4. Focus on the message transmitted and not the words used.
  5. Ask open-ended questions. That allows participants to respond in an elaborated manner. 
  6. Take notes of key points.
  7. Focus your attention in the present, the conversation. Do not compare the part or build castles for the future.