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Fed up of not being listened to by coworkers?

Not listening coworkers e1472566974212

Not listening coworkers e1472566974212

Estimated reading time: 6 mins

It’s not nice to be ignored or sidelined, is it? So what can be done?

If you’re the guy nobody listens to, you’re probably feeling quite miserable and frustrated about it. It could be as bad as really dreading going into work, and you might have even pulled a sickday, or two, to avoid it. Something has to change, right?

As painful as it maybe, the thing that has to change first is probably yourself. But the good news is is that it is far easier to change yourself than it is to change others. You are in control of you.

Before you make can change, you’ve got to know what to change, and why. And that will involve some self-analysis and inward reflection. Is it possible that one of more of the things below apply to you?

Are you background noise? Do you do most of the talking in your workplace? Are you a frequent chatterer? It’s possible that your coworkers don’t appear to pay you much attention when you’re talking because you’re always talking, and this becomes background noise to them. The noise emanating from your mouth is so familiar, your coworkers ears are de-tuned to your voice. Talking louder won’t have an impact; their ears will just tighten closer.

Are you boring? It’s possible that what you have to say is a boring subject! I have a coworker who is mad on rodents: keeping rodents; breeding rodents; feeding rodents; showing rodents; birthing rodents; burying rodents; talking about f**king rodents all the f**king time… I care not about rodents, so when this coworker talks, I stop listening because what they talk about is simply boring to me. Although your interests are of utmost curiosity and stimulation to yourself, it is possible that, to others, it’s dull as dishwater.

Do you talk only about yourself? I know a couple of people who talk only about themselves. I can’t stand either of them. At every opportunity, a conversation is selfishly redirected onto themselves – it’s utterly tedious and gets very annoying. Is it possible that you do this (perhaps not to the same extent)?

Are you a smartass? Nobody likes a smartass. Is it possible that you annoy people by always being right? I have been accused of this myself, and it wasn’t an unfounded comment (I admit). Being right all the time can be very annoying to other people. It can make others feel stupid, or inferior, or dumb; and this isn’t a nice feeling. So what happens? Your colleagues avoid verbal exchanges with you.

Are you predictable? Is your answer always the same? If so, then people will stop listening to you because they already know what you’re going to say!

Are you listening yourself? To be listened to, you need to also listen. Do you actively engage in conversations and really listen to others? Or do you consider a pause in the conversation as an opportunity to start talking? A conversation is a two-way exchange, or should be if you’re really paying attention and showing interest in your coworker. If your coworkers have decided that talking to you is like talking to a brick wall, then they will stop showing any interest in what you have to say, in turn.

Try a different tack…

Whatever the reason for you being ignored by coworkers is, carrying on isn’t going to solve the problem. It’s time for a change of approach with your colleagues. Do something different. So try these:

Try this book

How to Talk So People Will Listen, by Steve Brown, is the perfect companion for discovering how to make an impact with your verbal communication. Full of implementable, practical tips, this book helps readers learn how to persuade, influence, and put forward a convincing argument; use timing and the right words to come across as an authority on a subject; and talking so that the whole room is captivated by your every word. Recommended!

This post is part 17 of 23 in the series Effective Communication
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