If you are a leader, then it is critically important that the people you are trying to lead hear you. Not just pretend to be listening while you ramble in a meeting, but actually absorb what you are trying to say to them. You want people to listen to you.
How do you do that?
Here are 5 suggestions if you want people to listen to you:
Value the person.
No one follows someone willingly who they don’t believe cares for them. Teddy Roosevelt’s famous line “People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care” is true.
Don’t expect people to want to learn from you until they know you have their best interest at stake and that you care for them personally – not simply what they can do for you or the organization. We listen to leaders we trust.
Paint a great vision.
You have to give people something worth following. It needs to stretch them, while still being attainable by risk, faith and hard work. When they know there’s a glimmer of hope to the finish line, they’ll be more willing to learn what it takes to attain it.
Communicate it frequently.
Even the best vision fades over time. People get bored. Andy Stanley uses the phrase “vision leaks”. If you want to maintain your audience of followers, you have to keep reminding them why you are doing what you are doing.
Tell compelling stories.
People are motivated by example. They want to know that what they are doing makes a difference. People will be more likely to seek your input if they know you are leading them to something of value and importance.
Share in the reward.
People only feel valued when they get to celebrate the victory. If all the recognition goes to the leader, the follower feels taken advantage of to some degree. If you want people to keep listening – listen to them – share the credit. Celebrate often
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