Why do you listen? For new information…to get to the truth…so you can figure out what’s wrong? Those are valid answers but they are not the best answer. The most important reason for a manager to listen, really listen to what others are saying is because of how it builds others trust in you.
There are three reasons. First, when you are listening just to respond the other person (or people) can sense that you are about to pounce. It makes them very cautious about what they say to you and hesitant to even tell you anything.
Second, when you are listening to point blame then it feels like an inquisition or a bad episode of Law & Order! And who wants to speak when they fear their words will be used against them.
Third, when you listen, really listen without response but only curiosity then you validate the other person. In fact, there are few circumstances in life where we feel more valued than when someone truly listens to us.
So, why are you going to listen today? Because it’s the best way to gain influence, respect, and credibility without opening your mouth!