“We have two ears and one mouth, so that we can listen twice as much as we speak”.
We’ve all been there - sitting in a meeting, admiring how the guy up front can speak. The words flow, his hand gestures are on point, his facial expressions are mesmerizing, and he manages to pace the room without tripping over his feet. Charismatic? Check. Innovative? Check. Natural public speaker? Check. Of course, he’s born to be a leader.
It seems like a leader has ideas firing in his or her mind every day, is always on the go, knows the solutions to the problems, and points employees and colleagues in the right direction. They have the answers at their fingertips. But really, a good leader is also a good listener.
Few people realize the magnitude of listening as a super-strength. It requires you to be open to a coworker’s ideas and opinions that might differ from yours. You’re challenged to take criticisms and disagreements like a champ, and you’re not afraid to allow others to take the spotlight once in a while. So really, one of your greatest assets of communicating is not speaking at all.
You listen, you learn. Knowledge is power. What better way to get it than to actually pay attention to the information around you? Maybe you feel as if all of your experience in your field has made you the most efficient and innovative person for the job. The truth is, there will always be more room to grow. So pay attention and don’t miss out.
You test yourself. Listening is self-reflective. Not only do you benefit from being more informed, you keep your mind fresh and open. It might feel tempting to jump in with your own opinion, but practicing patience produces more thoughtful contributions when you add your input.
You gain trust. By attentively listening to your employees’ and coworkers’ opinions, you’re showing them you care. When you give them that level of respect, they’ll do the same for you. This develops a friendly and trusting environment, which keeps conflicts at bay and motivates your team.
You maintain a good reputation. If you’re checking emails or texts while on-call with a client, you’re doing it wrong. It’s important to be attentive even when a person isn’t physically in the room with you. Multitasking is just a fancy word for being distracted, which will prevent you from knowing what your client expects in the future or why your product/service wasn’t working for them.
As marketers and salespeople, our primary objective in any transaction is to lead clients through what we offer, how we solve their problems, and what they can gain from outsourcing to Alias, which means we’re here to talk you through what it all involves, but we’re also here to listen.