Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Growing Your Business in 2013 - Carol's Ten Listening Lessons

Guest blog from Carol Ritter of

Sometimes what’s on the menu just doesn't work.  We all have special needs when it comes to dining out. I call it “MENU”... You know, you order regular and you get decaf, you order no onions and your salad is loaded with them, you order unsweetened and you get sweetened, or you order well-done and you get medium rare. Sometimes this is due to an honest mistake but many times it’s due to poor listening skills. I've heard more people say, “she’s not listening to me, he’s not paying attention.”

A friend of mine ordered a sandwich with no onions, clearly stating that she cannot eat them and will get sick if she does.  The waiter, not paying attention, orders the sandwich with no onions but then gives her a salad smothered with big purple onions.  Now, if she said she will get sick on onions on the sandwich a person who pays attention would know, no onions on anything, a non-listener doesn't pay attention and it feels like they just doesn't care about you, your needs or your onions.

Listening sometimes, takes thought and practice, try these lessons...

Lesson 1. Pay attention to your customer, make them feel like they are the only one in the room

Lesson 2.  Stay focused on your task

Lesson 3.  Stop Talking - you can’t listen if you are talking

Lesson 5.  Repeat back what the person just said to you

Lesson 6. Make eye contact

Lesson 7. Watch for body language, it’s another way to communicate

Lesson 8. Be emphatic

Lesson 9. Do not judge, help them get to what they need and how you can help

Lesson 10.  Don’t be distracted, the customer can easily identify your lack of interest

Listening requires concentration. Sometimes we get so wrapped up with all the distractions in life we don’t take the time to listen, learn and serve our customers based on what they want, not what we want.  So, don’t cry over onions, just listen. It may even lead to profitable relationship.

Carol serves as a featured writer for the Home News and the Lehigh Valley Chamber Blog.
Carol is an accomplished professional speaker, coach and educational consultant specializing in innovative leadership, outrageous fundraising, million dollar marketing, and building organizational alliances throughout the country.  Carol’s creative  leadership with bullet proof ideas for recruiting MORE MEMBERS, MORE MONEY AND TER LEADERS. 610-442-4545  Like Carol on  Facebook at Caroltalks and CarolCoaches!  Carol S. Ritter, Immediate Past President, National Speakers Association Philadelphia

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