Master Reflective Listening

We’re incredibly proud of our Mentorship Program and periodically survey mentees on the effectiveness of the program. More than 92% of mentees say “my mentor motivates me to improve my work product” and 72% surveyed say “my mentor rocks”. We like to keep our mentors rocking by leading them through quarterly training sessions and most recently we trained on Reflective Listening. Being a master at Reflective Listening will help our mentors handle the variety of issues their mentees bring up, but it will also enable mentors to be skilled in relationships that go beyond work. We thought sharing the training session notes would be useful to the community at large from our business partners to our spouses and friends. You’re welcome!

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What is reflective listening?

This technique is used mostly in therapy or interactions between two people discussing feelings and emotions, but the roots are ubiquitous. Reflective listening is a method of garnering more information and more trust from the person with which you are speaking. On the surface it seems like a very simple concept, but in reality it is a deceptively difficult technique to employ. Reflective listening requires a clarification and a restating of what the other person is saying.

Why should I use reflective listening in sales?

No matter what sales process you utilize, at some point you will need to ask your potential client questions regarding their needs. When used properly, reflective listening can help you to increase your comprehension of these needs; at the same time it can help your client to focus their thoughts and to clarify what their business demands. This kind of transparency and focus would be beneficial for any salesperson.

How do I use this magical force?

There are a couple of absolute rules when employing reflective listening:

  • Listen more than you speak
  • Restate and explain what the customer said in your own words; don’t ask questions

Sadly there is no magical force that will help you get more sales, however, these rules enable you to better understand the business and gain access to the frame of reference of the customer. This also helps you to avoid looking at the situation from your standpoint, which is a powerful place to stand as a salesperson. Once you understand the customer and their needs, and throw in a little product knowledge, you have everything you need to walk down the path of a sale.

How do I know when I am using reflective listening effectively?

You should ask yourself some basic questions after speaking with the customer:

  • Did I interrupt the customer?
  • Did I remember or write down the important points made by the customer?
  • Did I summarize what the customer said in my own words?
  • Did the customer agree with my summary?

Remembering the details, just like using the customer’s name is very important in gaining trust and respect from the customer. If the customer agrees with your summary, you are on the right track as you have helped the customer to describe what is important and you understand what was said.

Again, why should I use reflective listening?

It’s simple, better communication with customers equates to more sales!

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If you’re debating starting a mentor program at your office, there is plenty of industry research about the benefits. According to Fast Company magazine “employees need mentoring from their managers and often that simply means they want more time with you.” Click here to read the full article and be sure to research the positive affects of mentorship programs in any industry.

Happy Mentoring![/fusion_text][one_half last=”no” spacing=”yes” center_content=”no” hide_on_mobile=”no” background_color=”” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” background_position=”left top” border_position=”all” border_size=”0px” border_color=”” border_style=”” padding=”” margin_top=”” margin_bottom=”” animation_type=”” animation_direction=”” animation_speed=”0.1″ class=”” id=””][imageframe lightbox=”no” lightbox_image=”” style_type=”dropshadow” hover_type=”none” bordercolor=”” bordersize=”0px” borderradius=”0″ stylecolor=”” align=”center” link=”” linktarget=”_self” animation_type=”0″ animation_direction=”down” animation_speed=”0.1″ hide_on_mobile=”no” class=”” id=””] [/imageframe][/one_half][one_half last=”yes” spacing=”yes” center_content=”no” hide_on_mobile=”no” background_color=”” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” background_position=”left top” border_position=”all” border_size=”0px” border_color=”” border_style=”” padding=”” margin_top=”” margin_bottom=”” animation_type=”” animation_direction=”” animation_speed=”0.1″ class=”” id=””][fusion_text]Ryan Morehouse joined Acquirent in April of 2013 as a Sales Manager. Ryan is responsible for a 20-person team with a long-standing partner, and has been tasked with finding creative ways to propagate continued success. He has worked at Enterprise and Groupon and dreams of the day he can work for Norwegian Cruise Lines.

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