Networking Power Tips: 8 Ways to Focus on the Other Person

2:37 pm Uncategorized

Conversation is a give and take between two or more individuals and each participant has a contribution to make. Taking time to listen to others demonstrates what they have to say is important to you. Here are some ideas on how to make the other person feel important.

1.Maintain eye contact. Keep your eyes focused on theirs. Do not continually look away or at others. One guideline is to look into the other person’s eyes for about 30 seconds, then look away for a few seconds

2. Ask follow up questions. Questions that follow into the same topic to show you are listening. They reflect a sincere curiosity about the other person’s situation and are an excellent opportunity to get additional information.

3. Use probing questions. By asking gentle probing questions around some of the general areas of a person’s life you can usually find a topic that will bring out some common ground or an issue that the other person is passionate about.

4. Use verbal cues. Verbal cues are simply expressions of agreement, interest or enthusiasm. Statements like “ Wow, that sounds great”, or “I like it” are an excellent way to demonstrate that we are interested and focused on the other person

5. Use body language. Studies show that over 50% of communication is through body language. Leaning in a bit from the waist up or tilting the head a bit demonstrate active listening and are a physical expression of focus on the other person’s words.

6. Give them the option to lead. Some people want and need to lead the conversation. Being aware of this and responding to it are an excellent way to focus on the other person. This makes them feel in control and these good feelings extend to include us.

7. Reply with sincerity and respect. Giving your total attention to the other person through sincere and respectful replies to questions and comments during a conversation are one of the powerful demonstrations that you are focused on them.

8. Include others. Some people have difficulty participating in group conversations. Make an effort to engage everyone in a group. This gives them their opportunity to shine and they feel they are contributing.

It takes maturity and discipline to put the other person’ needs first. In doing so, you enhance the perception of your professionals, integrity and confidence. Want more information about this topic? Email me at let’s talk. I can help.

Michael Hughes is known as North America’s Networking Guru. To get more info about his services or to have him speak at your next meeting or conference, visit his web site at

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