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Leaders need to Listen with Curiosity, Blog
If you are a leader, you should sharpen your listening skills. Listening is usually overlooked in the workplace. According to a recent study by Emtrain, 1 in 10 employees said that they do not trust their leaders to listen. We often hear our employees’ words but are not connecting fully with the energy or emotion behind what they’re saying.
Leaders need to understand how to listen to have a more productive conversation with their team, clients, and anyone else in their path. The listening process involves understanding what you hear and then taking actions based on what you have heard. Someone once said, “Hearing is through ears, but listening is through the mind”. People have good hearing, but seldom acquired the necessary aural skills that would allow their ears to be effectively applied for listening.
As a leader, keep in mind that you are the most significant asset in your organisation, and effective communication, listening, and problem-solving abilities will help you achieve better results. Leaders who are good listeners, according to Shamayun Miah, are better able to build trust, foster a better relationship and create an encouraging work environment.
Organisations that value every employee are the most successful ones. Look for companies that display good leadership abilities, such as listening to employees. Most job listings include requirements for good communication and listening abilities. Effective listening gives you knowledge and perspectives that increase your leadership capacity whilst fostering collaboration, says Shamayun Miah.
Shamayun Miah also highlighted the significance of listening actively;
- Listening helps in building the relationship with the team.
It can assist you in better understanding your team and identifying areas where you can improve your performance. Shamayun Miah explains how active listening aids in reaching a peaceful resolution during disagreements. That is how it benefits all parties concerned. In the post-COVID world, as employers place greater importance on customer and employee experience, active listening, empathy, and emotional intelligence will gain greater significance as employees and leaders continue to deal with the pandemic impact.
- It assists you in improving your behaviour with the team.
You can listen actively to gain a better understanding of someone’s point of view. Active listening can help you adjust your behaviour or attitude if necessary. It can also help you improve your team’s performance, advised Shamayun Miah.
- Leaders who are effective listeners have high-performing teams.
Leaders who are effective listeners have high-performing teams. Taking the time to listen to your co-workers demonstrates that you care about their opinions and feelings. It also shows that you’re committed to fostering a conducive working environment. It is imperative for driving people to work effectively and stay together despite unforeseen circumstances.
Here are some ways to improve your listening skills.
- Pay close attention.
When the person you are speaking with is sitting right beside you, it’s easy to become distracted. Switch your phone mute and laptop off. Take the front seat at a meeting so that everyone can concentrate on what you’re saying.
- Ask questions.
Use open-ended questions to get more information from the other person and show that you’re interested in what they’re saying.
- Never interrupt.
It can be tough to resist the need to interrupt when someone is talking about something personal but do your hardest not to! Before responding, you may take a few deep breaths and wait for them to finish their thought.
- Repeat what you just heard.
Ensure that you have accurately comprehended the other person and allow them to clarify anything you may have missed or misunderstood.
- Use your body language to demonstrate that you’re paying attention.
When the other person is speaking, make eye contact, nod your head, and smile. They will feel more supported and understood as a result of this.
- Write a summary of the conversation.
After you’ve finished speaking, take some time to reflect on what you’ve just said and summarise it so that everyone is on the same page. That will assist in setting expectations for subsequent actions or meetings.
Active listening is one of the most valuable skills you can possess; it will help you strengthen your team’s collaboration, get more done, and calmly settle conflicts.
Listening is one of the most important things a leader can do, said Shamayun Miah. Make active listening a top priority whether you’re looking for a new job or want to develop your leadership abilities. It’s a skill that will come in handy in any circumstance. We can always learn from those around us, including our direct reports; earning the trust of your employees gives you more significant influence over them and builds loyalty. When you actively listen, it will help you better understand the needs of your clients and employees and help you create strategies geared to address the needs of your business.
As leaders, we must balance our intensity and desire to perform at peak with compassion, empathy, and attention to our individual employees’ needs. Being mindful of their stress, challenges, and personal situation before impacting business performance requires us to enhance our listening and emotional intelligence.