What does it take to be a PERFECT LISTENER?? I found this listening test a few years back. It’s from a John Maxwell book on leadership (bonus points for whoever can tell me which one of the 5000 books he’s written it’s from!) and I’ve been talking about it in workshops and seminars for a long time now. The thing is I’m just not sure anymore if I really like the test or if I still want to use it.
Try this test first, see what you score and let’s talk about it.
Always= 4 points Usually= 3 points Rarely= 2 points Never=1 point
1. Do I allow the speaker to finish without interrupting? _________
2. Do I listen “between the lines”; that is, for the subtext? _________
3. Do I repeat what the person just said to clarify the meaning? _________
4. Do I avoid getting hostile and/or agitated when I disagree with the speaker? _________
5. Do I tune out distractions when listening? _________
6. Do I make an effort to seem interested in what the other person is saying? _________
Got it? Good. Now, if your score is more than 24 you’ve scored excellently on this test but your math skills aren’t all that ;). A perfect score is, of course, a 24, which requires that you answered “always” to each of the 6 questions presented. Now, this is obviously not some deep, heavily researched test that’s been normed across multiple groups with large sample sizes. But still, any “test” is supposed to provide some measure of understanding, skills, or knowledge acquired.
Does a perfect score on this test mean that you really are a perfect listener? Let’s look at some of these questions and find out. Continue reading