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Do You Hear What I Hear?

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I spend a good deal of my life talking to people.   Whether I’m talking to our amazing guests or different members of the Snooze family, I’m very conscious that a huge part of my life is spent on words.  In the service industry, the importance of open and honest communication is paramount.  I had the honor and privilege to sit in Magness Arena at DU for the presidential debate a few short weeks ago and it reminded me just how much listening helps shape our interactions.

I was astounded by the sheer magnitude of the event.  The booths, the bands, the protesters, the families, the pageantry.  Before the debate began we were told that there should be “complete silence at all costs”.   As the next hour and a half unfolded before me I realized the importance of “complete silence”.  Sometimes many of us spend so much time talking that we forget what it means to listen to our friends, our families and our guests.  We should work on taking time to listen without distraction or noise surrounding us.  Whether you are a Republican or a Democrat, if you were sitting in the arena that evening you definitely were listening in a way that you probably have never had the chance to do at home.   Without commentary from the media or friends, we were afforded the opportunity to listen to the issues unfiltered.

As I left that evening and headed home, I thought about how this evening could help me have better interactions in my personal and professional lives .   Like the candidates, we in the service industry, need to pay attention to body language and tone.  Hearing and listening are two very different things.  Receiving a barrage of sounds is not the same as truly taking the time to hear someone’s words.   In order to be better communicators, we may need to stop what we’re doing and truly listen.  If there is anything that I will carry with me from that amazing evening it is that every once in awhile we all can benefit from “complete silence at all costs”.

 

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  • Kimberly Buchanan
    Kimberly Buchanan Thursday, 25 October 2012

    Love this! I am going to share this with my co-workers. The staff at the non profit human services agency where I work see clients every day who are struggling through the lowest times of their lives. We sit and talk to them to determine if we are able to help them or not. Do we judge them? Do we know what is best for them? Do we truly "listen" to them?......................

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