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Importance of Listening Skills

Listening is an essential skill for daily conversations and for conducting interviews. There are six main strategies required for effective listening during any interview: concentrating on the conversation, avoiding judgment, reflecting, clarifying questions, using a summary, and sharing one’s ideas (Agarwal, 2019). Active listening during interviews is a valuable technique that helps build rapport with the people being interviewed, understand their ideas and feelings, and encourage them to elaborate on their thoughts. Active listening helps to extract the necessary information from the interview. The first reason why listening is essential during an interview is to create a rapport with the interviewee. Building a rapport is critical for establishing a trusting environment during the conversation (Agarwal, 2019). Second, understanding the other person’s thoughts and feelings about the subject is challenging without proper listening. Since an interview’s goal is to understand the interviewee’s ideas, being an attentive listener prevents missing important details (Agarwal, 2019). Third, active listening is needed to encourage people to expand their feelings and thoughts (Agarwal, 2019). Reflection on the person’s emotions and clarifying provided information demonstrates the interviewer listens and understands the other person. Attentive listening is a valuable strategy to create a trusting environment for the interview to encourage interviewees to share their thoughts and feelings freely. Understanding that listening is an essential part of an interview, I started to evaluate my listening skills. There are three listening skills that I use during conversations. First, I always listen to what the other person says about a specific question. Second, it is easy for me to reflect on other person’s ideas. Third, I ask open-ended questions to clarify the information provided. I consider myself strong in these three listening techniques because it has always been easy to memorize information during a conversation. However, I need to improve three other listening skills to become an effective interviewer: withholding judgment, summarizing the information, and sharing my thoughts. To improve these three listening skills, I need to practice interviewing in a standardized setting to receive detailed feedback after each session. Overall, listening skills are essential for conducting an interview effectively. Being non-judgemental and sharing one’s own experience about the subject helps to build a rapport with an interviewee. Listening is necessary for understanding people’s thoughts and feeling about the questions asked. Lastly, reflecting on their emotions, asking clarifying questions, and summarizing the conversation encourage people to elaborate on their ideas and provide more information for the interviewer.

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Agarwal, U. A. (2019). Qualitative interviewing. In S. Mishra & R. N. Subudhi (Eds.), Methodological Issues in Management Research: Advances, Challenges, and the Way Ahead (pp. 79–91). Emerald Publishing Limited. Web.

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