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Why Asking Great Questions Makes You a Great Listener October 7, 2020

Let me first start by saying the text below is taken right from one of my daily devotionals written by Rick Warren so I cannot take any credit for it. 

It reminds me of something I heard a long time ago,  “We were born with two ears and one mouth for a reason.” While I’m still not good at it, this is a good reminder for me in all aspects of my life – at home, at work, in my neighborhood, and everywhere for that matter. Don’t try to change overnight, create a reminder for yourself, and add it to your repertoire so that it may become a habit.

One of the clearest signs of a great listener is when someone knows how to ask open-ended questions.

To really engage someone in conversation, you have to stop asking questions that only require a “yes” or “no” answer. Those questions won’t get you anywhere! Instead, you have to start asking open-ended questions that allow someone to really share beyond a one-word answer.

For example, instead of asking, “Did you enjoy the concert?” you could say, “What was your favorite part about the concert?” It may seem like a subtle change, but it makes all the difference in how someone opens up to you and continues the conversation.

If you really want to go deeper in your relationships and better understand your kids, spouse, and friends, then you need to put some more thought into how you phrase your questions.

Proverbs 20:5 says, “A person’s thoughts are like water in a deep well, but someone with insight can draw them out” (GNT).

There’s one phrase that will make you a master listener—“tell me more.” You’ll need to use it over and over again as you interact with all kinds of people throughout your life.

When people open up to you, don’t let them stop after two or three sentences. When they finish, say, “Tell me more.” Then, after they’ve talked a few more minutes: “Tell me more.” Then, just when they think you’re done listening: “Tell me more.” Every time you ask for more, you’re going deeper and allowing them to express more of themselves.

You may tell people you really care about what they have to say, but the best way to show them is to ask for more. It tells them you’re interested. It proves you’re paying attention. And attention is love! Asking open-ended questions shows people you’re willing to give them your time, your focus, and your love so they can be heard and understood.

Draw deep from the well. Doing so doesn’t just improve your listening skills and conversations. It also transforms your relationships.

Tim Saumier

Written by: TIM SAUMIER, President and Founder

Tim Saumier started his recruiting career when he opened TYGES International back in July 2002 after purchasing a franchise from MRINetwork. He has grown the business from start-up office in 2002 to where it is today helping clients around the world solve their talent acquisition problems. While he does place people with companies, he brings much more through his consultative coaching with both companies and individuals hence the reason he has built long-lasting relationships that continue to work with TYGES.

Prior to starting TYGES, Tim spent thirteen years in corporate America with companies like John Deere, Moen, and Philips where he had the opportunity to work in supply chain, operations, and engineering during his career.


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