There is absolutely nothing like ‘knowing it all.’ Being learners and explorers, no matter how much you master a skill, there is always some room for more knowledge, and public speaking is no exception. It is a skill that requires constant polishing, the addition of new ideas, understanding of thought processes, and absorbing new perspectives.
When we listen attentively, we collect information and pay attention to details. We focus on every single word that the person in front of us has to say, analyze their style of speaking, try to understand their side of the story, and learn massively from them.
Thus, here are the top five reasons why listening plays a crucial role in public speaking.
1. You Learn Skills
Active listening is all about listening with all your senses. It concentrates on listening to what is being said rather than just hearing the speaker. One can use various techniques such as maintaining eye contact and nodding the head to reflect a sense of understanding of what the speaker is saying. When you listen with full concentration, you allow your mind to learn skills like persuasion, negotiation, and effective communication.
2. Helps Improve on What, How, and Why
The most important thing is a person’s content of the speech. It is the message that they want to deliver and amplify. Focusing on the structure of someone’s speech, the way they organize the content, and their way of delivering it can help you analyze your speech under these criteria and further improve yourself.
Pay attention to the ‘How’ part – their body language, posture, gestures, the way they cover the stage, deliver their presentations, and respond to the audience. It will help you absorb efficient techniques that they may have used.
Another crucial criterion is the presenter’s purpose of the speech. ‘Why’ are they up on stage, and are they communicating their purpose to the audience? Gaining an understanding of this perspective will assist you in delivering your message in an uncomplicated manner.
3. Makes You a Better Communicator
Listening allows you to polish your communication skills. When you listen, you focus all your attention on the speaker, making them feel heard. Attentively responding to their questions in between, imparting positive reassurance, and not interrupting their course of action can help you massively gather the other person’s trust.
4. Assists to Gather a New Perspective
The world does not run in one direction; there are a billion people with a billion perspectives of their own. Understanding, acknowledging, and embracing one another’s viewpoints and respecting them is vital for growing as a speaker with multiple thought processes. It can help you connect quickly with all kinds of people – those who have diverse mindsets, who are stubborn with their frame of reference, and those who are open to new viewpoints.
It will increase your efficiency as a public speaker and help you understand and be understood.
5. Tips and Tricks to Help You Listen More Effectively
- Be attentive and also relaxed.
- Screen out any distractions, such as noises, whispers, or background activity.
- Maintain your focus on what is being said instead of on what is missing from the speech.
- Listen without judgments to maximize your efficiency as a listener.
- Use gestures and maintain a good body posture to signal that you are keen on listening to the orator.
In today’s world, listening has become a gifted treasure. It not only helps build your skill set, but also carves you into a better speaker with time. Imbibing knowledge from other people’s conversations and presentations takes time, but is extremely useful for succeeding in the field of public speaking.