Listen with more empathy | BusinessDay

Study after study has shown that listening is critical to leadership effectiveness. So why are so few leaders good at it?


Too often, leaders take command of conversations and spend too much time worrying about what they’ll say next in defense or rebuttal. Leaders can also react too quickly, get distracted during a conversation or fail to make the time to listen to others. Finally, leaders can be ineffective at listening if they’re overly competitive, multitask too much or if they let their egos get out of hand.


Research shows that listeners listen best with they exhibit genuine empathy for other people’s perspectives. Henry Ford once said that if there is any great secret for achieving success, it lies in the ability to put oneself in another person’s place and see things from his point of view -as well as from one’s own.


Christine M. Riordan is the provost and a professor of management at the University of Kentucky.

 image  Niccolò Machiavelli’s The Prince