Can You Listen to Me Now?

According to Great Place to Work, one of the nine practice areas where leaders and managers create an environment of trust and achieve organizational goals is listening. Often times, when employees say they want their voices heard, they are really saying they want leaders who will not just hear them, but really listen to them.  Conscious listening creates greater understanding. Leaders and managers who listen create trustworthy relationships that are transparent and yield loyalty.  

While listening is one of the most important skills a leader and manager can
have, impacting job effectiveness and relationship quality, many of us are not great at it. In fact, resimages-1earch suggests that we remember only 25 to 50 percent of what we hear. So when we
talk with our colleagues, we pay attention to less than half of the conversation. Listening is becoming even more challenging as our world is increasingly fast paced, loud, and distracting.  S
ound expert Julian Treasure asserts, “We are losing our listening.” In
his short, 7 minute talk, Treasure shares five ways we can re-tune our ears for conscious listening to others and the world around us. 

Watch the Following TED Talk – Julian Treasure: 5 Ways to Listen Better https://www.ted.com/talks/julian_treasure_5_ways_to_listen_better?language=e

Here are Five exercises from Julian you Can Practice Today to Improve Your Conscious Listening:

  1. Silence: Take 3 minutes/day to reset your ears in silence to hear quiet again.
  2. The Mixer: Take a moment and try to distinguish all of the channels of noise you are hearing at once. This action will help you identify the many sounds you are missing.
  3. Savoring: Enjoy interesting and mundane sounds.
  4. Listening Positions: Move your listening position to what’s appropriate -active/passive or critical/sympathetic. This helps you become conscious of barriers/filters to listening.
  5. RASA: Practice active listening with this acronym that stands for Receive, Appreciate, Summary, Ask.

Erin Wixson, Senior Organizational Consultant

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