What Can Happen When You Stop Talking and Start Listening


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Posted in Sales, Skill on June 17th, 2014

What Happens When You Stop Talking & Start Listening

Good news. If you develop the skill and discipline of preparing and inserting impact questions into your conversation, you will begin to learn how to listen.

Impact questions allow someone to provide you with insight into how they think or what they think. If you don’t take the time to listen to the response to your own impact questions, however, you’re missing the most valuable part of a conversation.

It takes discipline to pause. Let it happen.

By listening, you provide ‘breathing room’ or ‘thinking space’ in a conversation. (And honestly, couldn’t we all use more of that?)

17 Things That Can Happen When You Actually Listen:

  1. You give a person who needs more time to formulate a response the time to do so.
  2. You learn something new.
  3. You demonstrate that you care about a viewpoint other than your own.
  4. You demonstrate patience.
  5. You become a team player.
  6. You get to ‘see’ how they make decisions. (and in sales, this knowledge is key)
  7. You prevent yourself from jumping to conclusions or making assumptions.
  8. You consider what you say before you actually say it.
  9. You broaden (rather than narrow) the discussion.
  10. You ask better questions (and handle objections with ease).
  11. You encourage others to talk to you when they have a problem or conflict.
  12. You show support.
  13. You avoid careless mistakes.
  14. You make smarter decisions.
  15. You become a source of energy for others.
  16. You demonstrate humility.
  17. You are ‘present’.
  18. You come closer to perfecting the art of conversation.

Listening is a skill and discipline that can easily be instilled in your work. Think about situations that would profit from a “pause” and make a conscious effort to allow that pause to happen.

Related Posts:

How to Hire Disciplined Salespeople

Knowledge is Overrated and Discipline Is Key

The Art of Conversation: The Salesperson’s Guide to Conducting a Conversation

Want to take it to the next level?

You’re in luck. We have created a short eBook for salespeople and entrepreneurs that want to learn how to communicate with greater influence.

We think it’s a great resource to get you started.

Communicate with Influence: For Sales Pros and Leaders

How to Communicate with Influence: For Sales Pros and Leaders  (click to download!)

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Jenny Poore
Jenny is the Director of Sales and Marketing for Sales Engine, a sales consulting firm based in Chicago that helps companies build and tune their sales engine. Feel free to connect on Twitter: @salesengine and @salesengineJP.


  1. Jenny – of course, for selling, listening is an often underdeveloped skill. But I have observed that top-producing salespeople are talented communicators – not just competent listeners.

    While it’s correct that people can’t be strong communicators without excellent listening skills, I believe selling anything requires equally strong persuasive skills, an idea that sometimes get short shrift with the constant clamor to ‘shut up and listen,’ or not to be ‘too salesy’ – two admonishments that I think goad salespeople into perpetual meekness, which is never a good thing.

    As with listening, a talented salesperson practices what to say – and how and when to say it – with equivalent fervor.

    By the way, I love the basset hound pic!


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