We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we speak.” Epictetus quotes (Greek philosopher associated with the Stoics, AD 55-c.135)
Managers often think they’re good at listening but if you ask their staff, they’d say just the opposite. Here’s a video that highlights what managers can do to improve their listening and communication skills:
This isn’t just about making your team feel heard. Many successful leaders from Jack Welch to Andy Grove to Steve Case, have extolled the benefits of listening. Grove says listening and mining data helped Intel to spot and benefit from the microchip boom in the eighties. Welch says it unearths problems and opportunities in time to take action. Case says listening allows him to “connect the dots” and notice patterns.
So, the next time you want to fill the silence with conversation try asking a question or making yourself available to your team by walking around. You’ll be amazed at what you learn.
**Check out the Wisdom of Teams DVD training (Jack Welch and Steve Case, along with other leaders are featured in this leadership team building video training.)