Chapter 13

From Listening to Hearing

The art of conversation is the art of hearing as well as of being heard.

—WILLIAM HAZLITT

One of the most amazing truths that the people I work with must face is that others do not perceive them as being good listeners. This is especially difficult for senior leaders, who spend most of their time each day listening to the problems of their team members. They know that they must accept this feedback as reality, even though it does not match up with their personal perception of how things are. In their mind, listening is all they do every day.

For a very long time, these experiences caused me to single out listening skills as the most important leadership behavior to develop. I thought that if a person could ...

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