10 tips for tip-top listening
Learn to want to listen. You must have the desire, interest, concentration, and self-discipline.
To be a good listener, give verbal and visual cues that you are listening.
Anticipate excellence. We get good information more often when we expect it.
Become a "whole body" listener: Listen with your ears, your eyes, and your heart.
Take notes. They aid retention.
Listen now, report later. Plan to tell someone what you heard, and you will remember it better.
Build rapport by pacing the speaker. Approximate the speaker's gestures, facial expressions, and voice patterns to create comfortable communication.
Control internal and external distractions.
Generously give the gift of listening.
Be present, watch the tendency to daydream. Don't drift off from conversations.
Source: The book "The Fine Art of Small Talk."