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The Three Levels of Listening

Managers & leaders are often told that they don't listen. Believe it or not, they do, but not how you would want them to. They are stuck at level one.

There are three levels of listening that we all exercise:

- The listeners' focus is on their own thoughts. Listen to reply.

- The listeners' attention is fully on the speaker. Listen to understand.

- The listener is completely aware of all cues and stimuli and reads body language, pauses, tone of voice, facial expression, or between-the-lines of what the person is saying or writing.

We use all because we need all three. However, we miss the conscious switch from one level to another.

Managers and leaders must learn to manage their listening and know when to use each intentionally. When they do this, they often figure out things that they have been blind to or blinded by.

This is when they suddenly see what their teams have been telling them for years.

This is when the puzzle pieces come together, and they realise things that have been staring them in the face the whole time.

This is when they come over to the employee's side of the workplace and see the world with their eyes. This is when they choose to see what their employees are talking about.

Leaders and managers who don't choose the right listening form are intentionally blinding themselves.

Is it a conscious or unconscious decision? Maybe, because what we don't see doesn't exist and what doesn't exist, we don't have to deal with it.

Do this exercise for a week, monitor your listening and you will see how lazy your brain is:-)) You really need to train it to listen.

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