The art of being a good listener can make you more likable and effective in the workplace. Too often people think that leadership and confidence are tied to directing conversations and taking command. Research on effective leaders shows the opposite is true. Great leaders are empathetic towards others and display finesse in harnessing others’ strengths. Knowing when to voice your views and when to hold back is an art and it requires the listener to have empathy.
Good Listening is tied to good problem solving
When you allow others to talk, you could begin to appreciate new ways of thinking. Considering different points of view could help you and your team think more broadly and critically about things to come up with better, more innovative solutions. If you want to become more effective in tackling problems at work, it pays to listen with more empathy.
Let go of the need to constantly express yourself
Research shows that active listening combined with empathy or trying to understand the others’ perspective is the most effective form of listening. If you’re always worrying about what you’ll say next in defense or rebuttal or you’re talking to much and forget what the other person said, it may hurt your ability to interpret issues and create consensus with others. Active listeners don’t just hear words, they seek to understand what the other is saying so they can be helpful.