Are you listening to every level of your organization? It’s easy to fall into the habit of listening to only those on your level in the organization. We may be headed for trouble when we think we know what “they” want or what “they” think. D.J. Kaufman said, “Wisdom is the reward for a lifetime of listening … when you’d have preferred to talk.” Not listening to all levels can create…
- A lack of ownership in the organization
- Low morale
- Missed opportunities for fresh ideas or innovations
- Tunnel vision
Today’s Leadership Challenge: Listen to those above you, listen to those beside you, listen to those below you, listen to those outside you
One of the most overlooked competencies in leadership today is the skill of listening. Listening enables the leader to maximize what God’s doing while minimizing mistakes, maximize team member’s strengths while minimizing their weaknesses, maximize employee engagement while minimizing misunderstandings. As leaders we can’t afford not to listen because the price is too high.
But leaders like to move fast which doesn’t always lend itself to listening. A large part of leadership is about understanding, discerning, reading people, assessing your culture, hearing God and then taking action. All which require listening. I mean really actively listening to people. I find it interesting that Solomon, a “get it done” leader himself, repeated the instruction, “Listen” over 20 times in the 31 chapters of Proverbs. Perhaps he emphasized it so much because we aren’t quite as good at listening as we think.
So what is the taletale sign that you are a good listener? Your people feel valued, respected, esteemed, appreciated and loved.