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BLOGHolding Attention

by Randall CraigFiled in: Blog, Communication, Make It Happen Tipsheet, ManagementTagged as: , ,

Have you ever had the feeling that the person you are speaking to really wasn’t paying attention to your conversation? Maybe they are pre-occupied with a personal matter? Or they might not care about your message (or about you)? Or perhaps they are focused on an impending deadline?

Whatever the reason, from your perspective it is rude and disrespectful. You worry that their lack of attention will cost you the sale, cost you the job, or prevent you from achieving your meeting objectives.

To improve your odds, there are some simple things that you can do:

1) Expectations set: make sure that they know why the meeting is taking place – and why it is in their interest to meet with you.

2) Walk in their shoes: what would a successful meeting look like – from their perspective? Spend the meeting delivering on this.

3) Do your research: prove that you know the basics, and more.

4) Don’t overstay your welcome: there is nothing more annoying than someone who is a time waster. Keep to the schedule, and when the meeting is done – even if it is early – leave.

5) Ask questions: It is easier to keep someone engaged if they are actually part of the conversation. A one-way broadcast is the fastest way to disengagement.


Sadly, it isn’t always the other person who isn’t paying attention – sometimes it is us.  This week, when you are a guest at someone else’s meeting, give your full attention.  How?  The same way that you give your attention when you are the host of the meeting – see the list above.

Does this topic resonate? Reach out to Randall: he can present it to your group.  (More presentation topics)
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