FOCUS ON LISTENING

FOCUS ON LISTENING

People want to be around those who share their time, knowledge, and support. – Annie McKee

Annie McKee is one of my favorite organizational development thinkers.  One reason is her thoughts on how to be effective in organizations is simple.

Want to make your team better?  Share your time.

One of my favorite training exercises focuses on listening.  It’s a simple one: one person sits for two minutes (timed) while another person describes an important person in his life.  The listener can’t say a word.  Only listens.

The result is always the same.  When one person listens, the other talks – there is a lot that gets shared.  People note how long two minutes feels.  How much gets said.  How much is learned?

But, if you ask most people, they regard listening as a “time suck.”  They put off talking to people and seeking information because it takes too much time.

Lending your time to the team is one of the most powerful things you can do to help the team.  Stopping the action for a couple of minutes to get the plan right and the information out always makes things go smoother.

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