"How can I get my kids to listen the first time I ask them to do something?"
This is a question I'm asked time and again! Parents want their kids to do something right away, kids will put it off until the yelling begins.
1. Get his attention
If we make a request while a child is fully engaged in another activity, he may not realize we're speaking to him or he's only half listening because he is focused on something else. Politely ask your child to stop what he is doing, wait until the two of you have eye contact then make your request.
2. Details matter
This is your opportunity to clearly state what you need from your child and when you'll want it done. If this is the first time he will be completing this chore, it is important to be clear about your expectations for what you consider "done correctly." If the child has been assigned the task before and didn't complete it as you requested, add a gentle reminder: "Remember, when I ask you to fold the towels it means they'll be put in the linen closet too."
** Remember to let go of everything being perfect! Your child is learning and developing a skill set, which means their version of a job "well done" might differ slightly from yours. Be flexible and willing to accept age appropriate skill levels.