What if those skills would be useful in other areas of your life?
Would that interest you?
With these Five Listening Skills, you can improve:
Your service to others
Your spiritual life
And your business!
I underlined your business not because it is necessarily the most important to you.
My business isn’t most important to me, but here our focus will be on your business; because your business finances the rest of your life.
The wonderful part is, that if you focus on being a better listener for your business, it will spill over into the other areas of your life.
And if you will practice your listening skills in your relationships, job, friendships, service to others and your spiritual life, your improved listening skills will automatically benefit your business.
As you become a better listener you will actually develop a system to be a better recruiter – you will become an Intentional Recruiter.
You will be an Intentional Recruiter as your focus turns to the agenda of people around you. Your listening skills will open up new conversations. Conversations that you won’t control. But you will have a new level of awareness that will point you to the people who want what you are offering.
Your listening skills will open up new conversations. Conversations that you won’t control. But you will have a new level of awareness that will point you to the people who want what you are offering.
You will recruit fewer people.
But you will more effectively recruit the people you need and who need what you have.
As Robert Baden-Powell says, “If you make listening and observation your occupation, you will gain much more than you can by talk.”
So, if you want to change your life and your business . . .
. . . read (listen with your mind) on!
But listening isn’t easy; we have to learn how to listen.
You will be glad you learned to listen; because as Doug Larson says, “Wisdom is the reward you get for a lifetime of listening when you’d have preferred to talk.”
Perhaps you are wondering who am I to preach listening to you.
I am a natural listener, who sucks at listening.
What do I mean “a natural listener”? You might be a natural listener.
Do you recognize that people come to you and share their heartache and deep dark secrets?
You may be a natural listener.
Like when you are at the pool reading a riveting mystery and the gal next to you starts telling you about her failing marriage. It happened.
All my life that has been the case. Even when I wasn’t equipped to listen properly, people shared with me.
In my freshman year of college, a friend shared something with me that I was unprepared for. I had no idea what to do with the information she shared with me.
To my shame, I just forgot about it, and a few weeks later I said something that must have been very hurtful to her.
She looked hurt as she said, “Don’t you remember what I told you?”
I still didn’t have anything to say that would help her. I hope she got help from someone; because she sure didn’t get help from me.
So, some people just are easier to talk to. I may be one of them. You may be one of them.
But we still must learn to listen.
Listening is a skill that if nurtured will serve those who are in your life.
I had to learn just like you.
I have failed — I have learned.
I have trained others.
For fifteen years, I was the director of a nonprofit organization that provided services to women and their families through our volunteers. Part of my job was to train those volunteers.
A large part of the training was teaching Five Listening Skills.
You can learn those same skills, and you will see them benefit your relationships and your business.
You will find that you can relax when meeting someone new; because these skills take the pressure off you.
You will make new friends and help others in ways that you never imagined.
That’s because of something Alan Alda said, “Listening is being able to be changed by the other person.”
Who can benefit from learning these Five Listening Skills?
These Five Listening Skills are for you if you are:
- New to network marketing
- A veteran network marketer
- A Facebook or digital marketer
- An owner of a brick and mortar business
- An educator
- A spouse or parent
These Five Listening Skills are not for you if you are:
- Someone in a hurry.
- Someone who is successfully using “old school” techniques,
- Unless you are a true leader ready to adapt old methods to new times.
Are you in? Listening is hard.
Consider this quote by Peter Drucker, “The most important thing in communication is hearing what isn’t said.”
Listening isn’t easy but it will reward you in countless ways.
Here is what you are going to learn:
- Four Common Listening Blunders
- Four Cures for Ineffective Listening
- Five Listening Skills
- How the Five Listening Skills Become a Recruiting System
- Strategies for Listening Online and Offline
Learning to listen is a cure for the NFL (no friends left) syndrome. That’s because of the truth of a quote by Karl A. Menninger, “Listening is a magnetic and strange thing, a creative force. The friends who listen to us are the ones we move toward. When we are listened to, it creates us, makes us unfold and expand.”
You do want to draw people to you and your business, don’t you?
So, let’s get started.
We are plagued in our communication by four common listening blunders.
Once, you have identified them, you are ready to do away with them. The Five Listening Skills will help you.
First, we are often controlled by a closed mind or an agenda.
Having an agenda will close your mind to other possibilities.
How do you recognize that you are being controlled by your agenda? You feel frustrated with someone’s response to your question or comment.
If we leave our agenda out of the conversation, we won’t be discouraged by the direction it takes. But how do you know if you are controlled by an agenda? Here are a few clues:
- You are using a script that someone taught you.
The problem with scripts is that your friend doesn’t have a copy. Scripts are great to help you see natural ways to talk about your business. But with the Five Listening Skills, you will be comfortable with impromptu conversations that will become tailored to the needs of your friend.
- You feel discouraged or frustrated by the direction the conversation takes.
You want to share the exciting new business you are in and your friend is talking about wanting to find the perfect job.
Or you want to share about the revolutionary new supplement that could help your sister have better health and she talks about seeing a new doctor.
- Your friend raises an objection that leaves you speechless.
This will happen if you see yourself as the message instead of the messenger. You should have a third party that is the message.
It can be a call or zoom meeting with someone in your upline or even cross line.
It can be a recorded video.
It can be a website.
If you struggle referring others, ask yourself why.
Sometimes we want to come across as the one with the knowledge. Have a heart to heart with yourself. Explain that third-party sources are the most effective way to get the information to your friends.
Sometimes we don’t trust our up line. You may not want someone to put the “hard sell” on your best friend.
I had that fear. But after a call or two, I realized that I could trust my sponsor and upline. Give your upline a chance. If there is part of their approach that you are uncomfortable with, talk to them about it.
Sometimes it is the fear of new technology. Zoom.us is used widely today by network marketers and is user-friendly. But if you are unsure ask your upline for help and get started using technology. You will become proficient. Until then laugh off the mistakes. Your friends will laugh with you, not at you.
Second, we are limited by not empathizing or listening to understand
Third, you are distracted by surroundings.
Fourth, you are bound by preconceived ideas.
The good news is that there are Four Cures for Ineffective Listening.
Your best line of defense to the listening blunders are the Five Listening Skills but there are other ways you can be a more effective listener:
First, release your agenda. Recognize that you have an agenda and let it go.
One of the biggest agendas is the need to sign up people. This probably is fueled by your need to make extra money.
Remember that you are not an employee. You are a business owner.
Employees expect to be paid soon after they have worked.
Business owners know that they are working towards making a profit; but that it is a process that requires patience.
If you have realistic expectations, your agenda will be less of a problem.
Empathize so that you can listen to understand.
Empathy is the act of putting yourself in the place of the other person. Imagine what it must feel like to experience what they are experiencing.
Empathy is greatly enhanced by the Five Listening Skills. You will learn skills that enable you to empathize.
As much as you can, remove or keep distractions at a minimum.
This is pretty easy to understand, not so easy to implement.
You can ask people to turn off cell phones. But not all of them will.
Just make sure your phone is turned off!
If you are doing a home meeting, arrange for children and pets to be out of the picture.
My puppy Max is a huge distraction and it is hard to remove him. He is either in the room stealing attention with his cuteness or he is making a fuss because he is behind a closed door.
Zoom.us works really well for me. Max photobombs the video sometimes but his presence is minimized.
You will have your own set of complications caused by distractions. Learn to anticipate and avoid all that you can. Learn to live with the rest.
Finally, you must be open to new ideas and solutions.
Be open to the idea that your best friend or sister is never going to join you in your business because it just isn’t what they want to do.
Be open to the fact that your brother would rather keep working and doesn’t want to sell stuff to family and friends.
Don’t be floored if someone you were sure would be your next “rock star” signs up with another network marketing company.
You know that what you are doing is absolutely right for you. People are not made with a cookie cutter.
What is right for you will be absolutely wrong for many of the people in your life.
What is wonderful for you might be awful for your next door neighbors. They might want to raise pit bulls.
The key is to remember that what works for you probably won’t work for your best friend, or sibling, or spouse.
After all, if everyone wanted to do network marketing, you would not be nearly as valuable to your company.
We have finished an introduction to the Five Listening Skills for Highly Effective Recruiting. You are on the way to becoming an Intentional Recruiter. We’ll look at each of the Five Listening Skills in the coming sections and conclude with how you can use your new listening skills with online and offline strategies.
Watch for the next section on Reflective Listening. It is the skill that will help you to connect and create a relaxed conversation.
It’s what you do when you are an Intentional Recruiter.
I value your input. Please email your comments and suggestions.
God bless you,