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If there’s one problem with society today that everyone, young or old, can agree with, it’s that no one wants to listen. People want to talk, advise, argue, anything but really listen to what the other person wants to say.
This creates awkward situations and resentment when it’s between two people. Now, extrapolate that annoyance across an entire customer base or workforce, and you can begin to understand why so many entrepreneurs struggle.
Learning to listen is one of the best decisions you can make as a business owner. Don’t believe us? Read on to learn how.
Proper Listening Improves Customer Relations
First, let’s examine this from the customer angle. If you read negative customer reviews and your first response is either to acquiesce utterly to their anger or become defensive, you’re not handling them well.
People don’t tend to communicate well when they’re angry. It’s up to you as the listener to hear their pain points and attempt to address them.
Don’t listen to your customers to argue with them or placate them. Listen to understand client pain points and legitimate customer service faults. When customers feel heard, they’re less likely to become negative promoters.
When Employees Feel Heard, They Become More Productive
Think of all the times you’ve brought up a brilliant proposal to your bosses, only to have them ignore you outright. Think of a case of workplace discrimination or sexual harassment, where employees came to you with concerns, but you were all too quick to sweep them under the rug.
While the above cases might seem extreme, they both have the same problem of an employer or entrepreneur not listening to their workers. If you engage in intentional, active listening with employees that come to you with concerns, you’d be surprised how much more motivated they become. (And woe betide the company that never listens. They’ll bleed talent faster than they can hire it.)
Curious about intentional listening? You can look here for more information on the subject.
Business Success Requires Communication
Last but not least, learning to listen helps create successful small businesses because a working business requires communication. You can have an amazing team with exceptional credentials under you. However, if they cannot communicate with each other, the clients, or you, then your business will go under.
Workplace politics can sink small companies. A single brush-off of a client’s concerns can cost you that client. You have to know how to talk to run a company, this is true. However, business success requires listening.
How Learning to Listen Helps Your Business: Let’s Review
Learning to listen can help your business grow on three fronts. First, it improves your customer relations. Second, it makes your employees more productive. Third, listening makes your team work more cohesively, which means the business as a whole can become more successful.
We hope that this guide illustrated how active listening can bring your business to the next level. If you found this information useful, then check out the Business section of our blog! We update each day with more articles like this one.