Patience is an important requirement of paying attention. You need to maintain a high level of attention without being distracted or starting to think of your response while the customer is talking because as soon as you let yourself get distracted or think about what you will say, you stop listening. You need to make a conscious effort of concentrating on taking in the information that your customer is disclosing.
Paying good attention is the foundation of great listening, but we often take it for granted, and don’t focus on practicing it. If we pay attention, we can easily get a customer interaction off to a great start.
The second key cornerstone of active listening is demonstrating curiosity. It’s very important to let your customer/caller know you are interested in what they have to say. You can easily do this verbally by saying things like “Aha, I see , I understand, yes, got it, ...” these verbal curiosity demonstrations are important in reassuring customers/callers that you are both listening and willing to listen and that you are sincerely interested and following what they say causing customers/callers to relax and feel more at ease.
Using open ended questions
The third cornerstone of active listening is to use the power of open ended questions. Open ended questions communicate curiosity, which builds more trust and create openness. Open ended questions also helps you get into the details of the matter and ensure you have full understanding of the situation or customer/caller issue. Open questions encourage the other person to talk more.