Sometimes the simplest things are the hardest to learn. Have you ever watched a baby learn to walk? It makes you wonder why we're not all still wobbling around, falling on our kiesters and bumping our heads. The same goes for leadership. Once we've learned the most complex skill, well, it becomes as automatic and easy as walking.
Are you wondering what that one thing is? It's as easy as breathing and doesn't require you to do anything strenuous. It does take a lot of discipline and requires you to set aside judgments. It's easier if you've studied mindfulness and are skilled in emotional intelligence.
What is it?
Contrary to what you might be thinking, a good listener also talks. But they talk to understand, not to interject their opinion. A good question shows they heard what was said and they comprehended enough to recognize the 'what and why' of the conversation. If you want a good book to learn some great questions, I recommend Quiet Leadership by David Rock.
Great leaders know that if people feel safe coming to them, the trust factor is upped by a 1000%. They clear away the distractions of phones and laptops and focus on the person in front of them. They create a sacred space where conversations are held in confidence and people can speak openly.
A lot of the conversation happens in the emotional language of the body and the tone of the words. A great listener hears with their hearts and eyes, as well as their ears. Sometimes it's not really comfortable and that's OK. Get comfortable with your discomfort.
Sometimes what seems easy can be a hard skill to learn.
More trust means more success at work and in our relationships. I can help build the trust in your organization. If it's your time to tackle this difficult issue, I'm here to help. Get in touch.