Welcome to this issue of "Dr. T's Timely Tips" by Dr. Tony Alessandra. Please send your feedback to info@alessandra.com!

Do You Listen as Well as You Speak?

Think about how you like people to listen to you. What are the important responses you look for in other people when they are listening to you? Here are four things most people mention:

First, eye contact. This is a sign of attention. When you do not have eye contact with your listener, you may feel like you are talking to a brick wall.

Second, verbal responses and vocal participation such as, "Hmm," "Yeah," "Wow!" and "No kidding?" These show interest in what is being said.

Third, other acknowledging gestures such as smiling, nodding your head, slightly leaning forward with interest (when appropriate), directly facing the speaker, and appropriate facial expressions or body language. All of these gestures say, in effect, "I'm really interested in what you have to say." Speakers like to see that.

Finally, the fourth kind of acknowledgment is making clarifying remarks that restate the speaker's points, such as "If I understand you correctly, you're saying that..." or "In other words, the biggest hurdles are..."

Use these techniques and you will show courtesy to the speaker. Equally important, you will enrich yourself by joining in a give-and-take dialogue that increases your understanding.

Here's to more personal insight,


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The secret behind Clinton Charisma

The other night I asked my wife to name the first person who comes to mind when she hears the word "charisma."

Without blinking, she said "Bill Clinton."

Over the years, I have asked friends, relatives, colleagues, and people in my audiences the same question -- and 99% of the time, their answer is always the same: "Bill Clinton."

The secret behind Bill Clinton's perceived charisma is not mysterious. He was not born that way -- in fact, if you wanted to, you could master very simply the same technique he uses and become just as influential, charismatic, and beloved.

Do you know what that technique is? It's listening.

Bill Clinton listens to people. I mean really listens. If you have ever watched him interviewed on TV or seen him working a crowd, you have probably noticed the way he leans into the conversation. He gives 110% of his focus to the person speaking. He nods his head; he "feels their pain." He makes everyone feel like the center of his universe... if even for a few minutes.

Some of us are born listeners. Many of us are not. Even Bill Clinton had to work at it, I'm sure.

However, one thing I can promise you is this -- even if you spent 20 minutes today entirely focused and intent on becoming a better listener, you would most certainly see the results immediately. You will be able to establish trust instantly with people. Your co-workers and employees will follow you to the ends of the earth.

My 14-page Listening Attentively eReport offers a powerful set of tools to help you build your listening skills up to maximum effectiveness. Topics covered include:
  • A quick quiz to assess the level of your listening skills and identify opportunities for improvement
  • The five roadblocks to effective listening
  • The four levels of listening
  • The six skills of active listening: How to CARESS your way to excellent listening
  • How to jumpstart your way to better listening

    Can you afford 20 minutes to master the single most important skill of communication?

    To purchase my Listening Attentively eReport, please click here.