For more tips from Steven Covey, be sure to check out his book, "The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People."
Photo of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Book

Listening Skills

A well thought out list of questions is great, but it means nothing if an account executive does not listen to the answers. Steven Covey in "The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People," discusses the importance of developing good listening skills. The fifth of his seven habits is to "seek first to understand" before being understood.

The sign of a good salesperson is one who gives their prospects their full attention and engage in what Covey refers to as "empathic listening." When this form of listening is done correctly, it helps to develop empathy between the speaker and the listener.

Photo of Me Listening to a Prospect

Ten Steps to Strategic Listening

In "Selling Electronic Media," Ed Shane highlights ten steps to strategic listening. They are as follows:

  1. Look the speaker in the eye.
  2. Block distracting thoughts.
  3. Ask questions.
  4. Concentrate on what's being said.
  5. Listen between the lines.
  6. Don't interrupt the train of thought.
  7. Listen with an open mind.
  8. Stay focused.
  9. Clarify.
  10. Make notes.

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