Active listening is a communication technique that requires the listener to feed back what they hear to the speaker, by way of re-stating or paraphrasing what they have heard in their own words, to confirm what they have heard and moreover, to confirm the understanding of both parties.
- Look the individual in the eye. Eye-Contact please.
- It doesn’t hurt to clarify. Seek extra information.
- Repeat what you hear from someone. I’m not talking word-for-word, but parrot what you hear from them. It helps with the clarifying.
- Affirm their position. You may not completely understand where they are coming from, but you can always reflect their feelings.
- Summarize the conversation when you’re finished.