In some situations, basic listening skills are not sufficient. When someone is angry, upset or sad, you need to deal with the emotion before you can begin to solve the problem. This is accomplished through an additional set of listening skills called Active Listening.
Active Listening basically means putting yourself in the other person’s shoes.
Steps To Active Listening
Step 1 Remain Calm: When faced with an upset or angry customer, keep your own emotions in check. Do not become defensive. Instead, be prepared to listen.
Step 2 Give Encouraging Responses: Let the speaker know you want to help solve the problem. This can be done both verbal and non-verbally.
Active Listening Skills
1. Mirror Feelings: Let the speaker know you understand how he or she feels about the situation (mirroring.)
2. Clarify Facts: Let the speaker know you understand the situation by reflecting back the content (paraphrasing).
3. Summarize: Sum up what you understand the speaker to have said and felt in total about the situation so that you can proceed to the next step.