Plenty of listening is what turns a wall of strange sound into messages you understand.
Try an internet search on Free (your target langauge) podcast for fresh, authentic material and leads to new interests. I tried FREE DUTCH PODCAST this morning because it may be that I will have to cross the border into the Netherlands to find work. The results were very exciting. Multilingual dutch dot com had a very comprehensive list of links. The site I´ll be looking at first is 2BDutch. It has forums, offers of help, written stories, videos with transcripts, all sorts of things as well as listening.
Incidentally, I applied for my SOFI card (So-cial & Fi-nance) yesterday, to work there. In total I spoke with four people there if you count the phone call to make an appoint. Without exception they were helpful and even friendly.
Is general listening specially useful for intermediate and advanced level or valid right from the start. What is your opinion?