Speech on the Importance of Listening for a Good Leader

1. Physically show that you are ready to listen, face the speaker and show attention.

2. Ignore the speaker’s appearance or manner of delivery: Be watchful of what people have to say, rather than how they say it or look.

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3. Watch your nonverbal communication: Expressions, gestures and body-language convey or betray the speaker’s sincerity and genuineness. Listen for under lying feelings.

4. Keep your mind on what the speaker is saying: Do not allow yourself to become distracted.

5. Allow for your own bias: You may not like what the speaker has to say. But you cannot always agree with everyone.

6. Visualise the situation from the speaker’s point of view: Try to see how the speaker has formulated his or her perceptions.

7. Do not interrupt immediately if you hear an apparently wrong statement: As the speaker continues this may not be so.

8. Evaluate the logic and credibility of what you hear: We can think four times faster than we can speak (or listen). Take advantage of this time-differential to simultaneously evaluate what the speaker is saying.

9. Do not give your last word: You need time to think about a problem from different angles before you communicate.