Happy Thanksgiving! Did you know that National Listening Day falls on the day after Thanksgiving? At SimplyConnect, we're most thankful for all of the listening opportunities we have each year. From focus groups to client meetings, listening intentionally serves up an extra helping of perspective and the solutions that stick.
While we all know listening is important, did you know that listening is integral to personal and organizational success? According to the International Listening Association, 45% of the typical business day is spent listening. In fact, 85% of everything we know we’ve learned through listening. Here’s the catch, though: even though the majority of our time and learning is devoted to listening, only 2% of professionals have had formal education or training to understand or improve listening skills and techniques. Authentic listening is key to activating real change, but it’s often a blind spot for many of us. That’s why we’re serving up some fast facts about listening that you can quickly gobble up and use to help your team members feel valued and empowered to own your organization’s goals. Beyond that, we also invite you to get real and challenge your own listening habits. So, once you watch the video and learn about some great hands-on tactics for effective listening, try thinking about your day-to-day life:
- Are you hearing or listening? Hearing is like collecting data. You have the information—and that’s great. But how is it changing your behavior or your team’s culture? Are you using the data you’ve collected to tell your story in a more impactful way that captures the hearts and minds of your people?
- The secret ingredient to really effective listening? Compassion. When it comes down to it, researchers define compassion simply: Compassion is caring about the well-being of others. Your employees are the people you work alongside every day. The more they feel that you care about them, the happier and more productive environment you’ll get to share.
- Action. This is critical. Whether one of your employees speaks up passionately in a meeting or intentionally seeks you out to share an idea or experience, be sure to come back to them or incorporate that idea into a future conversation. There’s nothing more discouraging than feeling like your thoughts or experiences aren’t valued. And, in our experience, the more you let your employees contribute to the story your organization is telling, the more engagement you’ll see in the future.
We hope you enjoy your turkey—and that extra slice of pie—but when you come back to the office on Monday, check in on your own listening style, be intentional about letting your team know they’re cared for, and let the gourd times roll.