3. Attentive listening
How often has this happened: You’re introduced to someone new and a few minutes after learning the person’s name, you have no idea what it is? “The reason isn’t that we have a bad memory; we didn’t store it in our memory to begin with,” Francis explains. “We’re usually thinking about what we’re going to say–none of us wants an awkward silence. We’re thinking ahead, and in the process, we miss that the person told us their name.”
Instead, Francis suggests looking into the person’s eyes and listening mindfully to what he or she is saying. “Don’t allow yourself to be distracted by whatever else is going on in the room, things you need to do, or things that happened before,” he says. This technique is likely to have a big impact on your relationships with customers, employees, and anyone else you speak with.