Posts Tagged ‘listening’

Silence is Golden

April 4, 2011

Doug Van Dyke

Listening can be a powerful skill in your development toolbox if you only know how to employ the proper techniques.  Improving Listening Skills was the topic of the March AFP Suncoast Chapter membership meeting as Doug Van Dyke, President of Leadership Simplified, shared the 5 keys of great listening and how to apply them in a manner that boosts professional results.

According to Van Dyke, the 5 Keys of Great Listening are:

  • Full Attention – square-up your shoulders to connect
  • Body Language – have terrific body language
  • Don’t Interrupt – it’s an issue; we go into solution mode
  • Capture the Essence – the meaning of what they’re saying
  • Capture the Emotion – the feeling they’re experiencing

Words account for 7%, tone 38%, but body language is 55%.  Here are 10 Body Language Tips:

  1. Eye Contact
  2. Fingers on Chin
  3. Facial Expressions
  4. Lean Forward (slightly)
  5. Lean Backwards (relaxed)
  6. Neck Rubbing (your own)
  7. Gestures – horizontal (warm & welcoming); vertical (alarming)
  8. Attending – little nods of affirmation
  9. Crossed Arms – interpret as closed off
  10. Postural Echoing – doing something similar

The “Sounds of Silence” can best be summarized as:

1.)     Capture the essence and emotion of what was said – repeat back in different words

2.)    Great Repoire Builder – through communication techniques & listening skills

3.)    Be a Fantastic Listener

“Great listening is the lynchpin of great communication.”  “There is power in silence,” concluded Van Dyke.

Van Dyke is the author of Leadership Simplified – The Field Guide for Savvy Leaders.  For more information about Doug Van Dyke, visit