I'm working on a coach training certification, and one of the "proficiencies" I'm expected to have mastered is "engages in provocative conversations." Now, that really got me thinking. What's a provocative conversation?
Well, the word "provocative" means that the conversation provokes something-hopefully a reaction from the client which helps take them to another level. The ideal response to the provocation is for the client to realize something they didn't know or find a solution they didn't have before the call.
When I think about what is required to reach that provocation, I see that the first thing is not just that I'm listening-I'm always listening. The first thing is that I'm HEARING what the client has to say. Because if I'm listening with one ear but thinking about my response with the other ear, so to speak, I'm not hearing, and if I'm not hearing, I'm not responding to my client, I'm reacting.
You can greatly increase the value of your conversations with clients, friends, family and probably even your dog by truly hearing what they're saying-"I need your help with this. I'm not doing very well today. I'm hungry."-that last being the dog.
Your coaching assignment for this week is to think very deeply about how you can hear more and just listen less-and then implement those thoughts into your daily life starting tomorrow. Think tonight, hear in the morning.
If you have any questions or comments about the magic of hearing, please feel free to drop me a line at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org. I always want to talk to people who've read my articles and discuss what you've gotten from my writing.
About The Author
Angie Dixon helps small business owners get their acts together. She is a personal development coach specializing in helping people integrate their home and work lives so they feel less stretched and more balanced. Get her FREE EBOOK on balance at http://www.discoveringtruenorth.com. For questions or to discover how coaching can change your life, contact Angie at mailto:email@example.com.
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