In today’s technological world our ability to communicate is now much easier……or is it?
Email and messaging may be quicker but are they as effective as speaking on the phone or face to face?
If you are in a leadership role you set the standard to create a culture that values the spoken word. Listen to colleagues and give them a voice.
It shows them you respect their opinion. It’s motivating.
Develop your ability to listen and see the response you get from your colleagues. It is huge.
What to do?
Give people your full attention:
- When somebody speaks to you stop what you are doing and look at them.
- If you are busy, tell them so and book a time when you can focus on them fully. If they have an emergency stop whatever you are doing. It can wait.
- Turn off your phone, close your computer and, if you can, move to somewhere quieter so you can focus on what is important to your colleague.
- Don’t look at your watch, yawn or focus on anyone or anything else when your colleague is speaking.
- Don’t interrupt.
In response you should:
- Pause before you respond, even if you know the answer. This shows you are thinking about what they have said and giving it your full attention.
- Summarise what they have said by asking questions on the topic to show you have listened.
- Become an ‘above the line listener’ – it says you care about them and what they are saying, ‘below the line listeners’ are saying ‘I don’t care about you, you’re not that important’
Try it out – it’s an easy and quick win for you as an authentic leader.