There’s a proverb that goes 'A problem shared is a problem halved'. This seems to imply that
the best way to solve a problem is by first sharing it (in this case, talking). Which is all good
but what if that someone you’re sharing with is not listening? That’s not a problem halved,
is it? I am of the educated view that effective listening is more important than talking.
We’ve all heard the saying ‘We have two ears but only one mouth’. This implies that
it is more important to be a listener than a talker. It is good to have great speaking skills but
for you to be an effective communicator, you need to enhance your listening skills. Effective
listening involves listening and absorbing information relayed to you by the speaker. After,
process the information received by taking into account the speaker’s situation at that
moment. These include demeanor, pitch and tone of voice, mood, level of education, age
and other factors. Use all this to parcel a reply that fits in all these factors to ensure the
most effective way of communication.
Jarvis in ‘O’ (Oprah Magazine) November 2009 edition observed that the better your
listening skills are, the more likely you are to be listened to. Listening to other people will
give you contrary opinions which might lead to solving a problem. Effective listening allows
coworkers to build a rapport between themselves. This will, in turn, assist them to
understand and serve clients better. This will also help workers sort out clients’ issues
better. Abraham Lincoln made the observation that it is better to be silent and let people
Student’s Last Name 2
think you're a fool than to speak up and remove all doubt. We should stop engaging in
thoughtless speaking and instead embrace effective listening. One should gain more
information which will reduce the chances of appearing less intelligent. Knowledge is power.
You can’t gain knowledge if you’re engaged in talking instead of listening.
Make no mistake, listening has its importance. For example, it’s pointless if we only
listen and don’t speak. We have to speak to let the other party know that you understood
them. If one did not understand, you can adjust the message and put it in a manner that
they would be able to understand. Talking is a better way of communication than written
communication. By not being able to read the mood of the person passing the information,
written communication is limited. There may also be limitations to the written information
like typos. Talking to the other party face-to-face eradicates doubts since they can be
rectified on the spot. Talking is, thus, the best way to ensure no confusion ensues from an
instance of communication.
Yes, talking is an important part of communicating since it enables the person talking
to expound on their thoughts on the spot. This should help the person receiving the
communication better understand what is expected through the elaboration. Talking and
listening go hand-in-hand since there can be no proper oral communication without
effective listening. Poor effective listening skills defeat the very purpose of talking. This
involves observing the other party and reading their body language, voice changes and so
forth. This will assist you to know the best way to parcel your message so that it can be
received and understood. That is why effective listening is more important than talking.
Student’s Last Name 3
Jarvis, Tim. "How To Talk So People Really Listen: 4 Ways To Make Yourself Heard".
Oprah.Com, 2009, https://www.oprah.com/money/communication-skills-how-to-
Wrench, Jason S., et al. Stand Up, Speak Out: The Practice and Ethics of Public Speaking.
Zetlin, Minda. 7 Smart Reasons You Should Talk Less and Listen More. Inc.Com. Feb 11,