About two years ago our company had Dr. Gerald Bell come to speak on leadership and management strategies. I was unable to attend his event myself, but I am consistently reminded of some of his principles (which I find very useful!).
This morning, our Vice President of Human Resources, Bucky Cline, saw fit to remind us, of some of the strategies that can help us be the best leaders and employees we can be. If you would like to learn more from Dr. Bell, check out one of his numerous books or sign up for a seminar!
One of the main principles I always gather from Dr. Bell's reminders is the importance of listening. Not just listening, but active listening. You will be a more successful leader if you can improve your listening skills by even 50%. First, here are some truths about listening...
The 6 Laws of listening:
- You can’t listen and work at the same time.
- You can’t listen and think at the same time.
- There is no such thing as multitasking.
- Everyone knows exactly when you stopped listening.
- You can’t fake listening. You can’t pretend to listen. You can’t fool people.
- People only tell you the truth when they think you’re capable of hearing it.
However, if you want to prove to your employees and coworkers that you are listening (i.e. that what they have to say is important):
- Take an active listening body position! Make eye contact, face the person you are speaking with. Take your hands off your keyboard.
- Realize that you are either listening or not listening. There is no in-between.
- Prove to your employee (and yourself) that you understand what they are saying by asking questions! Engage actively in the communication once your employee is finished. Make sure you completely understand!
- If You Think They're Listening - Think Again (briansmithpld.com)
- 4 Traits of World Class Listening (Being an Active Listener)(gcsagents.com)