Active Listening Makes You More Successful

  August 21, 2017

Acquire one of the most critical skills you need for success at work: active listening.

Active listening is about fully devoting yourself to the conversation you’re having, to gain insights that could make all the difference in an interview – and in other aspects of life.


Let’s consider an example…


Imagine you’re the fourth and last person being interviewed for a job. Early on in the discussion, your interviewer says, “I’m exhausted; it’s been a super busy time”. Instead of letting that go without comment, out of curiosity, you ask why that’s been the case. The response:

“I have a six-week-old baby at home.”


From there, the conversation instantly shifts. Your questions lead the interviewer to reveal that he’s in a household adjusting to life with a newborn -- an exciting but stressful time for his young marriage. You even learn his spouse thinks he’s spending too much time at work and needs to devote more time to the baby.


Because you’re actively listening, you realize your interviewer is desperately searching for a solution that’ll enable him to leave work earlier. To land the job, you demonstrate that from Day One, you’ll work to reduce his workload and get him home earlier.


In the four interviews, this magical exchange happened just once. Everyone else mostly talked about themselves: their interests and even their selfish desires. But you focussed on a solution to your future boss’ biggest problem.

You actively listened, and put someone else’s concerns ahead of your own. As a result, you receive a job offer and the others do not. THAT’S the power of active listening.