7 tips to help leaders become better listeners

Being a good listener can not only help leaders improve their organization but also help cultivate a trusting work environment between employers and employees.

In his new book Becoming the New Boss: The New Leader's Guide to Sustained Success, Naphtali Hoff, PsyD, outlines many leadership techniques. Listed below are seven of his tips for becoming a better listener.

1. Make eye contact and let people know you are focusing and paying attention to them.

2. Use receptive body language, such as leaning in and nodding to acknowledge you are listening.

3. Stop talking even when you feel tempted to jump in with a related comment. Even though it may be relevant, hold off until your employee is done speaking to help communicate that you value their time as much as yours.

4. Practice empathy and try to understand the other person's point of view. Even if you disagree with what is said, consider its merits carefully and think about how that person came to hold these beliefs.

5. Summarize and clarify once the other person has finished speaking.

6. Leave the door open for future communication to let your employee know your conversation was not simply a formality, but that you actually respect their insights.

7. Thank them for approaching you and recognize how hard it is for some people to speak candidly with their bosses. 

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