A common section for general society related issues and problems. You can literally find some really helpful articles in here.
1) Don't assume you have to do anything but listen. If you appear to the speaker like you are waiting for someone else to pound you with a marble-filled sock, then you put up a subtle wall against communication. Remember that before you complain again that no one tells you anything.

2) Do respond to show you care about the worker and the situation. There are people who have this calming influence over others, and all they do is listen. Pay close attention, and maintain eye contact.

3) Do acknowledge the other's feelings in the matter (frustration and annoyance are typical, but there may be excitement or anxiety). This makes a strong connection.

4) Do determine why they are speaking to you. Listen actively for the reason.

5) Don't be aggressive in forcing people to come to their point. This will likely offend and will reduce communication your way in the future. (This may sound good on the surface, but it's really not.)

6) Do use gentle persuasion to get to the point so you don't end up strangling the poor speaker. You hear a lot of frustration over "slow people" in this ever-faster workplace, but gentle persuasion can get anyone to the point. Example: "I believe I'm familiar with this background information, how can I help you?"

7) Don't write anything down until you are sure it is approved by the speaker. If people are bringing you sensitive information, ask them if it is alright to make notes. You may have to write down information after they are gone.

8) Don't let your current emotional state force you to miss a powerful listening opportunity. Put aside your frustrations momentarily so that you can focus on the speaker.

9) Don't "walk and talk" unless it is a very routine matter. Stand or sit with the speaker for optimum impact.

10) Do end a conversation by providing positive feedback even if the message was negative.

11) Don't automatically try to fix the problem stated by someone. If you find yourself responding by saying, "Have you tried..." or "You need to..." or something similar, then you need to reassess your listening skills immediately. This mistake is typically made by men, but everyone is guilty sometime. This is de-motivating and confusing when not desired by the speaker.

12) Do react appropriately to the reason they have come to you. See the box below for appropriate responses to three common situations.
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