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Listening Up in a Down Economy: Better Hearing Institute Launches Public Service Campaign for Better Hearing and Speech Month
Date:5/5/2009

b candidates need to sound sharp during an interview. And employees who aren't sure what an employer is asking can't answer their best. According to the International Listening Association (ILA), listening is one of the top skills employers seek in entry-level employees and in those being promoted. Individual performance in an organization is found to be directly related to listening ability or perceived listening effectiveness.

According to Kochkin, to stay at the top of the game in these tough times, people should ask themselves these questions:

- When someone asks me a question, do I frequently have to ask them to repeat it?
- Do I ever have to strain to hear a question?
- Do I feel that people are mumbling a lot?
- If someone is not looking directly at me when they speak, does it make it harder for me to answer?
- Do I have trouble hearing over the telephone?
- Do people get annoyed because I misunderstand what they say?
People who answer yes to any of these questions may be having difficulty hearing, and it may be slowing them down in an already tough job market.

According to a BHI national study-"Impact of Hearing Loss on Household Income"-Americans with unaddressed hearing loss make less money than people with normal hearing. The study found that wearing a hearing aid reduces the amount of income lost. Specifically, untreated hearing loss negatively affects household income, on-average, by up to $23,000 per year depending on the degree of hearing loss. The use of hearing aids mitigates those negative effects by about 50 percent.

The ability to hear and listen well enables employees to be more productive. They are better able to understand the work that has been assigned and the expectations that have been set. And people who both hear and listen well are more likely to establish positive working relationships with bosses, clients, and colleagues.

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