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McKinsey: Listen More and Enjoy More Success?

March 1, 2012

Jane’s post last week about listening was timely.  This issue of the McKinsey Quarterly touched on how listening skills can impact senior level job performance, but that few executives are able to cultivate them (hey we’re not alone!).

Good listening—the active and disciplined activity of probing and challenging the information garnered from others to improve its quality and quantity—is the key to building a base of knowledge that generates fresh insights and ideas. Put more strongly, good listening, in my experience, can often mean the difference between success and failure in business ventures (and hence between a longer career and a shorter one). Listening is a valuable skill that most executives spend little time cultivating.

Making the effort to actively listen to our peers and subordinates requires courage, because it puts us in a vulnerable position.  What if she says something I don’t like?  What if he asks a question that I cannot answer?  Will they think I’m dumb if I don’t say something?

Read the full article here (registration required)


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