Social Work Tip of the Day: Listen…people want to be heard.
Healthy communication is essential to every relationship. Every human being deserves a safe space to express their desires, fears, achievements, and challenges. Listening is a critical skill. NOTE: Hearing and listening are not the same.
One of the most important things that social workers and helping professionals can do to build a strong client/worker relationship is listen. Active listening opens the door to helping, trusting, and healing. Here are 10 ways to become a better listener:
1. Pay attention to the person speaking.
2. Face the speaker and maintain eye contact.
3. Be aware of your body language.
4. Avoid distractions.
5. Keep an open mind during the conversation.
6. Don’t interrupt or judge.
7. Restate what you hear.
8. Ask questions to clarify what you hear.
9. Provide feedback.
10. Respond appropriately.
Nicki Sanders, The Packaged For Success Coach, is an experienced trainer, group facilitator, and program manager. She has packaged her Masters of Social Work degree and over 15 years of work experience into Packaged For Success, a training and professional development company. Packaged For Success provides career coaching to college students, entry-level job hunters, and experienced employees seeking a promotion. Packaged For Success also offers communication and productivity improvement training for employees and supervisors and provides consultation on building sustainable, impactful, socially responsible community programs.
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