Quite rightly, we place a lot of emphasis on developing the speaking skills we need to perform well at work in interviews, presentations and meetings. And as we spend so much time at our computers, developing strong writing skills is also key to success. But what about listening skills? According to SNP leadership communication consultant Ellie Hearne
Listening is something we all do and have done for our whole lives. But there are two ways to listen: actively and passively. Only one of these is going to help you to become a better leader, a better communicator, and frankly, a better friend or significant other.
Here below you can watch a short video that introduces the key communication skill of active listening.
Before you watch
Before watching the video, check some key vocabulary that you’ll hear.
While you watch
Watch the video and answer the questions.
After you watch
Now that we’ve learned a little more about active listening, let’s focus on some of the language used in the video. Here are three activities you can use to first look at some useful everyday language and then some phrases and a language tip you’ll find helpful.
Complete the extracts from the video using one of these words in each space.
Learn two commonly used phrases from the video.
Use a dictionary to check the meaning of words you’re not sure about. Here’s a good online dictionary you can use: Oxford Learner’s Dictionaries.
In English, the traditional the gender agreement rule states that pronouns must agree with the nouns they stand for both in gender and in number. This means that English lacks an ‘uncontroversial’ pronoun that lets you talk about a person of a generic or unknown gender.
Nearly always, if a language must choose one gender to be generic, it is the masculine. So we might say ‘One of the politicians lost his job.’ even if we don’t know for certain the politician is male. The modern, politically correct and increasingly accepted solution to this problem is to use the plural pronouns ‘they’, ‘them’, and ‘themselves’ as gender-neutral replacements for nouns. Here’s an example taken from the video.
You can read more about gender-neutral language here: English has a traditional solution to gender-neutral pronouns.