Focus on Your New Connection
Can you think of instances in which you’ve interacted with a truly great communicator? Do you remember how it felt? Probably like you were the most important person in the world in that moment. That feeling most likely stemmed from the way the other person looked at you—straight in the eyes. Or the way in which the other person listened to you, hearing what you said and understanding the meaning and feelings behind it. Maybe it was how the new connection avoided external distractions and stayed focused on you and only you.
Extraordinary communicators are fully present when they communicate and interact with another person. That’s the hallmark—and secret—of great interpersonal communication (see Table 17.1).
|When You Are. . .||You. . .|
|Only pretending to be interested in the other person||Lose that person’s respectIndirectly offend and insultPrevent the relationship from developingDon’t absorb quality informationHave short conversationsDon’t create a basis for meaningful follow-up|
|Moderately interested in the other person||Establish a moderate amount of credibilityShow you carePick up insights about who that person is and what he or she doesHave average-length conversations|
|Genuinely interested in the other person||Gain that person’s respect and admirationDifferentiate yourself as a top performerGet high-quality information about that person’s needs, goals, challenges, ...|