Useful Resources to
OPEN THE GATE to INCREASE your
LISTENING LEADERSHIP PERFORMANCE

BETTER LISTENING =
BETTER LEADERSHIP

Why a website on Listening Pays

I have spent the past 25 years studying, practicing, teaching, researching, and writing about LISTENING and its direct connection to LEADERSHIP. I have realized one main thing: IF YOU LISTEN BETTER, YOU WILL LEAD BETTER. Why? Because listening is at the core of all human behavior and especially at the root of effective leadership. Listening is the thing we do the most of in our life, except breathing.

ARE YOU ONE OF THEM? It’s estimated that the majority of adults do not have any formal listening education. Yet, the average person misunderstands, ignores or forgets at least 75% of what they listen to. ‘Listening’ is definitely not the same thing as ‘hearing’. The costs of poor listening are too high to ignore, including loss of relationships, opportunities, trust, respect, credibility, money, and even loss of life, just to name a few. People lose when they don’t listen!

This website contains both free and affordable resources for you to increase your LISTENING LEADERSHIP performance. It consists of articles, books, assessments, a blog, an app, one-on-one and group listening and leadership coaching, listening aids, courses, seminars, podcasts, speeches, and retreats.

I encourage you to invest your time, effort, and energy in your listening leadership performance. It is a lifelong process and the results will prove invaluable to you. It has for me. LISTENING PAYS!

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Rick Bommelje, Ed.D., CLP

TORTOISE

THE TORTOISE ALWAYS WINS

By on August 31, 2014

 

TORTOISEMisty Haggard-Belford is a great example of a listening leader who although inundated daily with multiple messages, thoughtfully takes advantage of her thought-speed advantage while listening.  Misty is a business owner and adjunct college professor and has recently been elected to the Brevard County (FL) School Board.  Misty is focused, works hard, and prides herself on the positive listening habits she has developed over the years.   “Because I am willing to take the time to listen effectively, I probably have greater access to more information than most people, because people are willing to share.  I also think people tend to seek me out and look for my leadership because of my listening habits.  In addition, when I take more time and respond appropriately, more consideration seems to be given to my feedback.”

For more than 50 years, technology has existed to “compress or speed up speech.”  Research indicates the average person can listen and comprehend up to 400 words per minute without substantial loss of comprehension.  That is nearly three to four times faster than the average person speaks. Most individuals speak at a rate between 125 and 180 words per minute, averaging around 160 words per minute.  Thus the average listener has “extra” time to either waste or utilize.  If you listen at the rate of a rabbit while the speaker speaks at the pace of a turtle, it becomes easy to waste your listening energy and your precious thinking-time advantage.  Listening leaders do not waste it, they use it. 

Poor listeners loaf when they could be listening more effectively.  They are not activated and do not use the thought-speed/speech-speed advantage well.  They daydream.  In addition, poor listeners buy into the myth of multi-tasking and attempt to focus on multiple agendas.  They know they can think faster than others speak, so they try to focus on several things.  They get bored and often go off on mental tangents while they wait for the speaker to catch up.

On the other hand, listening leaders have developed a variety of strategies to stay with the pace of the speaker and not drift off.  Among other things, they evaluate, anticipate, review, and summarize (EARS).   In addition, they Plan to Report Back (PTRB).  Listening leaders identify and make a personal commitment to share the essence of what they listen to, even if it is whith themselves.  They take notes.  They question and clarify.  In short, they do whatever it takes to use the time on their hands and mind to stay with the speaker, capture greater information, and glean deeper values.   In the tortoise and hare world of speaking and listening, it is the classic case of use it or lose it.  You can use it to your advantage and profit, or not.

LISTENING PAYS POINT: It takes hard work to be an effective listener.  The Tortoise always wins!

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BETTER LISTENING = BETTER LEADING

BETTER LISTENING = BETTER LEADING

By on July 22, 2014

Frances Hesselbein is one of the most highly respected experts in the field of contemporary leadership development.  The former President of the Girl Scouts of America and current CEO of the Frances Hesselbein Leadership Institute knows how critical listening is

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LEADERSHIP IS ‘WRITING ON A BLANK SHEET OF PAPER’

By on June 18, 2014

Several years ago, I had the honor of interviewing Millard Fuller on the topic of leadership and listening.   Millard founded Habitat for Humanity International in 1976 and served in executive roles until 2005.  Through his stellar leadership, Habitat grew into

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By on May 21, 2014

A little girl who came home from school excited about the drawing she had created in art class. She skipped into the kitchen, practically bursting at the seams with excitement. “Mommy, Mommy, guess what?” she exclaimed. Her mother, who was

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WHICH VOICE DO YOU CHOOSE TO LISTEN TO?

By on April 9, 2014

A powerful old story captures the importance of the messages that we listen to inside of our heads. An old Cherokee is teaching his grandson about life: “A fight is going on inside me,” he said to the boy.”  It