The common cold of leadership is a term used to describe poor listening skills. It is a common problem that can have a significant negative impact on leadership effectiveness.
Listening or hearing?
Listening isn’t hearing. To be a great leader you need to be a good listener and properly hear what your team are telling you. Poor listening can lead to a number of problems, including:
- Misunderstandings: When leaders don’t listen carefully, they are more likely to misunderstand what their team members are saying. This can lead to bad decisions and missed opportunities.
- Low morale: Team members who feel like their leader isn’t listening to them are more likely to be frustrated and disengaged. This can lead to low morale and productivity.
- Lack of trust: When leaders don’t listen to their team members, it can erode trust. Team members may feel like their leader doesn’t care about their opinions or input.
Top tips for developing leadership listening skills
By improving their listening skills, leaders can build trust, improve morale, and make better decisions.
There are a number of things that leaders can do to improve their listening skills, including:
- Give team members their full attention: When someone is talking to you, make eye contact, nod your head, and ask clarifying questions. This shows that you are interested in what they have to say
- Don’t interrupt: Let team members finish their thoughts before you respond. This shows that you are respecting their time and perspective.
- Be open to different viewpoints: Don’t just listen to agree. Be willing to consider different perspectives and ideas
- Paraphrase what you hear: This shows that you are listening and understanding what is being said
- Be present. When you are listening to someone, put away your phone and other distractions. Make eye contact and focus on what they are saying
- Be empathetic. Try to understand the other person’s perspective and feelings
- Be open-minded. Be willing to consider new ideas and perspectives.
All our apprenticeship programmes include training on brain friendly communicaion and effective listening. We also know that providing teams with training and development opportunities is fundamental to ensuring long term motivation – often more than a pay rise. Now is an ideal opportunity to upskill your teams, improve employee engagement and drive business improvements all for little or no cost.
Our apprenticeship programs are a great way to stay ahead of the pack in today’s fast-paced business environment and can help you promote a culture of continuous growth and excellence, creating a future that your employees want to be part of.
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