Leadership Fail – Becoming Too Big to Listen

A friend of mine shared with me recently that his boss had been promoted and that a new boss had come in to take over the team.

“How’s that going?” I asked.

“I think it’s going to be a long year…if I can make it that long!’ he responded

When I inquired as to what the problem was, my friend shared that the new boss seemed intent on proving that he was the smartest person in the room. When the new boss asks a question, the team member being asked begins to answer and then the new boss cuts off the person speaking with the wave of his hand and the words, “Yes, yes, I already know that!”

A New Decision Every Day

It won’t take long for many of the people on my friend’s sales team to begin looking for another job. Those who don’t leave will disengage to the point of only doing the minimum required to get by. What this new leader has failed to realize is that every person on his team is making a decision every day on whether or not they are going to fully engage with him to do whatever it takes to win. When his top talent people begin to depart he will say it is because of money, but the truth is that it is because of value.

Value Me and I Will Follow You Anywhere

Rarely will someone leave a company strictly because of money. I know it happens, but it is rare. What generally happens is someone begins to feel that they are not valued, not needed or not relevant to what is taking place and then they look for other places to work, places where they will feel valued.

The #1 Way to make someone feel valued is to listen to them. I don’t mean talking with them while you check your email on your smart phone or look through the papers on your desk, but truly listen to them. You will be amazed at the difference you will see in others as it relates to how they work with you when you begin to set aside time to deeply and actively listen to what they are saying. Listening is a core competency of a high performing leader. Listening to others will transform how you are viewed by others.

I have found that most people think they are good listeners, but we are not. Especially in the highly distracted world we live in. I’ll make you this promise: you will be amazed at how people will come alongside you when you increase the value you show them through listening. Whether at home, at work, at school or in the community highly valued people will go out of their way to make sure you win!

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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