Gentle Bamboo Solutions

Training Activity Listening to understand, not to respond


One of my favorite activities to do in a training session is called "Listen to understand, not to respond"

In this I make pairs of participants, and they are called conversation partners. I have them listen to each other, and all they have to do is to summarize what the other said. No response of your own other than reiterating your partner’s points.

Then the partner will have to “judge” you based on whether you actually got their main points, or if you’re missing important parts.

Surprisingly, it takes quite a bit of effort because we’re so used to just listening for keywords while our minds go elsewhere.

Try this the next time you do a session around Listening, Working in Teams, etc., and let me know how your participants feel.

Listening to you, really and completely,