Leaders are constantly searching for tools, information, and skills that make us more effective and take us to new levels. I am in a constant search for learning that enhances our abilities and effectiveness as a leader
I am very persuaded that one of our struggles is effectively using the information we have previously acquired. In our search for more we have overlooked what we know. I work with leaders on a daily basis. Each one of us have strengths and weaknesses. I just wonder if we have overlooked the basics of leadership in order to exhibit the profound.
One of the basics of effective leadership is the ability to listen well. I have made a strong effort in the last year to improve my listening skills. Needless to say this has not been a easy endeavor. I have come to realize that this is one of the secrets of effective leaders.
Mike Myatt is a top level CEO Coach in America. Here is a quote from one of Mike’s blog post.
Want to become a better leader? Stop talking and start listening. Being a leader should not be viewed as a license to increase the volume of rhetoric. Rather astute leaders know there is far more to be gained by surrendering the floor than by dominating it.
Here are a few suggestions to improve our listening.
1. Use the listen first rule
Most leaders have developed a habit of talking first. Most leaders are of the thought that people expect us to solve their problems. This could be true and maybe we can but, we cannot solve it well without listening well.
2. Resist interrupting anyone at any time
Many leaders interrupt the moment they think they have the solution. Many times I have spoken too soon only to find out my input was off target and off point. Not only was I embarrassed, but also displayed my lack of patience.
3. Seek to understand before being understood
This point displays the highest form of showing others that you legitimately care. People feel loved and appreciated when leaders take the time to simply listen. I will again quote Mike Myatt…”Don’t be fooled into thinking being heard is more important than hearing. The first rule in communication is to seek understanding before seeking to be understood.”
4. Listening to other’s is a sign of genuineness
One sure way to reveal that you genuinely care for other’s is through listening. The pride or arrogant leader has failed to develop listening as a basic skill of leadership development. The broken leader knows there is more to learn from listening than talking.
The following passage of scripture says it all. He who answers a matter before he hears it, it is folly and shame to him…Proverbs 18:13
Your comments are solicited and appreciated.