I recently attended a meeting where people were asked to share something about themselves. Insert eye roll. As the group began to share their stories I observed that people were eager to share, but not eager to listen.
Listening is a skill. People want to feel appreciated. It isn’t a conversation if you only want to hear yourself. Just stay home and speak in front of a mirror.
After witnessing their behavior I have decided to cognitively practice of the art of listening. This involves not cutting people off mid sentence, but actually taking time to gather and retain the facts that people share with you. One of the main reasons that some people can’t retain the names of others is that that they are focused on themselves. Another homework assignment. Try to remember the names of everyone that crosses your path. This shouldn’t just be reserved for VIPs. Everyone has a story to share.