SAVE
Personal Development

The Power of Listening to Succeed: Talker to Team Player

I’m so proud of my client! Let’s call him John. 

Over the past three months, John has been successful in adapting his communication style and effectiveness so much that it’s noticeable to (and appreciated by) his colleagues and superiors. Quite simply, he has started to use inquiry + listening for understanding before disagreeing or talking. 

John is passionate about his work. He’s also incredibly smart. However, he had been getting mixed feedback about his communication style in meetings. Seems that some of his colleagues felt he talked too much and took too long get his thoughts out. Others believed he was thoughtful and measured and thorough. (Long-windedness is apparently in the ear of the beholder!) He was confused and frustrated, unsure of how opinions (gathered in a 360 performance appraisal) could be so divergent.

His boss reached out to me, hoping I might be able to help him communicate in a way that is more collegial and concise. She told me John is a highly skilled and valued manager, but that his style in meetings verged on pontificating and many found it overbearing. She had talked to him about it, and they agreed to get him some coaching.

The Power of Listening to Succeed: Talker to Team Player

Learn from the Best

Eric Lofholm
Master Sales Trainer
Keynote Speaker
EntrepreneurNOW Network

Subjects of Expertise

Sales Skills
Motivation
Mindset & Strategies
TJ Walker
Bestselling Author
Personal Development & Habits Expert
EntrepreneurNOW Network

Subjects of Expertise

Communication Skills
Public Speaking
Personal Development
Arvee Robinson
Master Speaker Trainer
Bestselling Author
EntrepreneurNOW Network

Subjects of Expertise

Public Speaking
Persuasive Presentations
Lead Generation
Brad Hussey
Web Designer
Marketing Consultant
EntrepreneurNOW Network

Subjects of Expertise

Web Design
Online Business
Freelancing Career
Carol Marzouk
Executive Coach
International Speaker
EntrepreneurNOW Network

Subjects of Expertise

Leadership
Employee Engagement
Valerie Sargent
Emotional Intelligence Strategist
Award-Winning Business Leader
EntrepreneurNOW Network

Subjects of Expertise

Emotional Intelligence
Leadership
Sales
Scott Robertson
Certified StoryBrand Guide
Public Relations Expert
EntrepreneurNOW Network

Subjects of Expertise

Public Relations
Marketing Communications
Attraction-Based Marketing
Paul Banoub
Technologist
Leadership & Productivity Expert
EntrepreneurNOW Network

Subjects of Expertise

People Management
Productivity
Leadership

Audience-centricity, or putting the audience first

Luckily, John was super self-aware and also motivated to improve. When we began working together, he and I dove into why and how he tended to make his longer, more involved points during meetings. Turns out, it came from a sincere place – his passion for his organization’s work and his drive to achieve good outcomes. Fair enough. What we worked on was basically audience-centricity, or putting the audience first. We did that in three ways:

  • Using inquiry: Asking questions of other people so he could draw out context, examples and perspective. It helps avoid misunderstandings and makes others feel as though they’ve been heard. Inquiry surfaces material for better, more informed dialogue and decision-making.
  • Listening for understanding … versus listening for responding: Being open and empathetic in how he pays attention to other speakers in the room. Most of us listen with only half an ear; the other half is busy formulating or finessing a response. Listening for understanding requires that you stop composing your response or put aside thoughts of responding until after you’ve assimilated what the speaker has said.
  • Disagreeing diplomatically: Offering up an opposing view in a constructive way on those occasions when John disagreed with what he was hearing. This involves a combination of 1) repeating what you heard and understood from others to be sure you got it right, and 2) articulating the shared opinions or shared goals you have with the other speaker(s). After those two steps, which empathize and build connection, you are free to share your view.

Just like the old saying, “look before you leap,” you should also think before you talk. You may have a strong position or a lot to say, but your colleagues and clients want and need to be heard and understood first. It’s all about them, your audience, because you can’t and won’t achieve your goals without them.

Earn As You Learn

Earn 25% commission when your network purchase Uplyrn courses or subscribe to our annual membership. It’s the best thing ever. Next to learning, of course.

Earn Learn Image
Beth Levine
Featured Uplyrn Expert
Beth Levine
Public Speaking Coach, Presentation Skills Trainer, Member - Board of Directors
Subjects of Expertise: Communication Skills, Public Speaking, Public Relations
Featured Uplyrn Expert
Beth Levine
Public Speaking Coach
Presentation Skills Trainer
Member - Board of Directors

Subjects of Expertise

Communication Skills
Public Speaking
Public Relations

Leave your thoughts here...

Find Your Place in The World

Top Companies choose Uplyrn to look for Talent.