- Market Action Planning (MAP)
- Multi-Cultural & Diversity
J. Greg Gimba, listening is the most used but the least understood component of the communication process.
Poor listening accounts for the number one cause of a salespersons failure.
Fortunately, listening as a critical element of communication is a learned and trainable skill that can both build trust and improve relationship with customers.
What is listening?
Listening is defined as the cognitive process of actively sensing, interpreting, evaluating, and responding to the verbal and non-verbal messages of present or potential customers. Effective listening go beyond merely hearing what the other person is saying to actually getting the meaning of what is being said. Listening requires salespeople to fully attend to, comprehend and respond to each individual clients.
A number of research studies showed that listening consists of three dimensions: Sensing, Evaluating, and Responding. It is intuitively plausible that a salesperson must engage in all three kinds of behaviors to be perceived as an effective listener. When customers feel that a salesperson is listening to what they are saying, it enhances their trust and confidence in that salesperson. In todays competitive market, many businesses are well aware that retaining existing customers is more efficient than getting new ones.
The basic tenet guiding the concept evolves around salespeople asking what the customer needs, listen to response, and creatively provides a solution that builds a better relationship which can in turn be beneficial to the business.
Finally, Sales Managers should always develop motivations for their salespeople so that they will want to listen to the customers. As the saying goes, active listening requires effort, energy, hard work and most importantly patience.