Balancing the demanding schedule of a leader is tough enough:
- Client Meetings
- Strategic Planning
- Emails & Phone Conferences
- Staff Agendas
- Budget Considerations
- Production / Service Issues
Communication. That's the big one! The one skill that weaves its way through every other responsibility. And the leader has the extra challenge of keeping the balance between speaking and listening. The speaking part comes easily for most leaders. Especially when you reach a point of confidence in your mission and decisions. The hard part for most leaders is the listening side of communication. And yet, that is the skill that makes the biggest difference in your influence.
John Baldoni, chair of leadership development at N2Growth, contributes an important perspective on this in the SmartBLog on Leadership. He points out an interesting example from the show “Ray Donovan”and how the title character played by actor Liev Schreiber demonstrates the importance of being a quiet leader. "A quiet leader is one who values his own strengths but also has the ability to see the world as others do for one simple reason....Knowing how another thinks is essential to persuasion."
The problem is - we've never been taught HOW to listen and we don't have enough TIME to listen. It is something that we have to learn "on the job" and master while attempting to lead others to a desired outcome. But, what if you had a system - a formula that could help you solve that problem?
Here are 5 Key Tips / Filters that I coach leaders to use as a system for improving their ability to listen: (From the LEADERS LISTEN article.)
RESPECT - Respect the Other Person. You give attention to those you respect.
RETREAT - Retreat from the Distractions. Minimize distractions to build positive actions!
REMOVE - Remove Obstacles. Use the "Time Delay Advantage" to hear the real message.
RESTATE - Restate for Understanding. Verify what you believe you heard.
RESPOND - Respond for Action. Listen with the intent to produce solutions.
You can have the complete "Leaders Listen" report and strategy. I'm giving it complimentary to every person who wants to be a more persuasive leader. Click here for the LEADERS LISTEN strategy.
In addition to the report, a 5 part video series has been posted to YouTube. Each 4 to 5 minute segment offers practical ideas that will help you implement the strategy. A self-paced study guide is available to help you.
Here is the first of that series. Grab a cup of coffee and let's have a short visit.