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Pay attention to that person

Pay attention to that person

What is that particular quality we are looking out?

When you meet someone - in particular those who have passed a certain age - you can often tell how they have been living their life. From the crows feet near their eyes, their eye contact or the lack of it, to the way they walk pass the room. It sounds ike a bit judgemental, maybe it is, or maybe I have read too many detective novels when I was young. But my point is everyone will have some kind of impression of a person, whether it comes from logical and analytical lenses, or by intuition and sensory, or both.

“You can‘t teach an old dog new tricks.”

That’s where I respectfully disagree. While it might be true for many, for others it is entirely possible and in the past few weeks I have observed that first-hand. While opening up to new professional network recently, I have met inspiring people where the drive to move forward and learn new things will make Gen Z feels FOMO. The underlying pattern? They are humble enough to know that they need to continuously adapt to keep up - in particular around how the advance of business and technology.

Learning opportunities are everyone - just look at the person sitting next to you.

Be a sponge and absorb

Now when we meet those kind of people, I usually exercise one of the most important skills that I have acquired over a long time of learning, knowing when and how to be quiet. And just listen. And take mental note. And make mental note. Lots of them.

Ocassionally give feedback, show that you have been listening attentively instead of zoning out. Point out something that the person have shared in the past, acknowledge new insight, share an opposing point of view when they ask, and so on. The usual recipe of having a good discussion. But above all, absorb the positive energy, the knowledge, the experience, and in due time, share it with others as well.

Some tips to listen and connect better:

  • Relax, it might sounds ridiculous but it helps.
  • Take key points and make associations with your own knowledge and experience.
  • You can structure it by breaking them down into: who, what, when, where, how and why.
  • Be sincerely interested about what the other person has to share.
  • Give appropriate feedback through body language, confirmation, etc. otherwise it will just be awkward.

Trying it out

Now it‘s time to switch on your radar and find those people. When you do, remember the tips and give it a try. One last thing, when there are pearl of wisdom, don’t forget to compile it into your personal knowlege management system. Let’s talk about it in another post.

Author - Kiky Shannon


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