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Skills for New Managers, 2nd Edition by Morey Stettner

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Chapter 4Managing to Listen

Now that you’re a manager, you can interrupt employees freely. If you don’t like what you hear—or you think they’re wrong—you can jump in and say so.

Before you bask in your newfound power, however, weigh the consequences of rushing to judge what others say. Your refusal to listen can come back to bite you.

As president of The Coca-Cola Co., Donald Keough was visiting the beverage giant’s German operations soon after the Berlin Wall fell in 1989. In a meeting with Coke’s top German executives, Keough heard them propose a $500 million investment in the newly democratized East Germany. Keough dismissed the idea outright.

After the meeting, Keough learned that the head of German operations wanted to resign. The executive ...

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