Establish contact – look at the person.
Maintain a natural relaxed position that indicates your interest.
Use natural gestures that communicate your interest.
Use verbal statements that relate to the person’s statements,
I see what you mean. I can appreciate what you went
through…“ without interruptions, questions or new topics.
The purpose of PARAPHRASING is to test your understanding of what the students
said and to communicate that you are trying to understand the basic message. It also
helps keep the flow of the conversation going. It’s extremely helpful in exposing and
clarifying mixed or double messages. DON’T say, “What I hear you saying is…“ It’s
the oldest cliché‘ and will kill the conversation.
Listen for the basic message.
Restate to the student a concise and simple summary of the basic
Observe a cue that indicates that you’re correct, or ask for a response.
CLARIFYING brings vague material into a sharper focus. You are making a guess re-
garding the member’s basic message, and offer it to the group member. This is not an
interpretation of the problem, but a clarification of what he/she has told you.
Try a restatement or ask for clarification, repetition or an illustration.
PERCEPTION CHECKING is asking the group member to verify your perception of what
has been said, usually over several statements. It is a method of giving and receiving
feedback on the accuracy of the communication. The effect on the student is likely to
be a feeling of being understood.
Paraphrase what you think you heard.
Ask for a confirmation directly from the student about the accuracy
of your perception.
Allow the student to correct your perception if it was inaccurate.
Be conscious of your nonverbal cues:
Facial expressions, smiles, frowns, raised eyebrows
Uh huh,” “yeah” – these keep the student talking
Use a calm, soft voice, no matter how you feel inside.
Height – are you towering over the person in a tall chair?
Get on the same level or even below his/her level.
Material borrowed from: The Helping Relationship, Process and Skills
by LawrenceM. Brammer
WOULD YOUWORK FOR YOU?
Are you friendly and approachable, or are people afraid of you?
Are you available when they need advice, information, or assistance?
Do you always remember to criticize in private?
Do you merely tell people what’s wrong, or do you try to help them overcome
their weaknesses and correct their errors?
Do your people feel that you take a genuine personal interest in them, or that
you regard them as “hands” or “numbers?”
When one of your organization members performs a difficult or arduous task, or
turns in an outstanding performance, do you express your appreciation? Publicly?
ARE YOU GENEROUSWITH PRAISEWHEN IT’S DESERVED? Do you take credit
for everything that’s done by your department, or do you share it?
Do your people feel that you are trying to further their careers, or that you are
blocking their progress?
Do your speech and actions inspire confidence in and loyalty toward the organi-
zation? Do they make members proud and happy to be associated with it?
Do you play fair or favorites? Are pleasant assignments rotated insofar
Do you encourage a sense of participation by allowing your people to make their
own decisions to the extent that the nature of their work permits?
Do your organization members knowwhere you stand? Can they count on you to
back them up if they follow your instructions and something goes wrong?
Are you flexible and considerate in dealing with people’s varying backgrounds,
personalities, and idiosyncrasies? Do you remember that personal problems
sometimes affect office behavior and try to make allowances?
ARE YOU PATIENT AND SYMPATHETICWHEN BREAKING INNEWMEMBERS or
teaching new tasks or methods to old members? Does your manner add to
member’s nervousness, or help put her at ease?
Are you predictable, or do you blow hot and cold? Can employees assume that
your attitude toward each company rule will be the same today as it was yester-
Do you lose your temper? Do you become personally abusive?
Do you tell your people promptly of changes in policy and procedure which will af-
Do you gossip, or do members feel their confidences will be respected? Do you
keep your word?
WELL, HOWABOUT IT?Would you work for you>
by: Sidney A. Cooper, President, Silo, Inc.