Following is an example of how one manager realized the value of listening:

“My secretary said to me today, “Steve, you’re not listening to me.”, and she was right. It was an awakening for me. I had totally tuned her out and proceeded with reading the text I just received.

Jennifer is a loyal and valued employee and she felt completely discounted by my actions. She had come into my office to discuss the scheduling of her vacation and I had just ignored her. She went on to point out that I give all of my sales people 30 minutes of –uninterrupted time on a weekly basis and all she wanted was 5 minutes to discuss what she felt was a very important issue.  I was guilty as charged.

I immediately apologized and coordinated her vacation with human resources and she was delighted that she will be spending Christmas with her family in San Diego. A happy ending!  I also have scheduled monthly meetings with her to give her a forum to voice her concerns and also share her accomplishments.

I am glad I was cognitive enough to hear her frustration with me. This was not an isolated case in her eyes and could have developed into a serious problem.”

Steve was guilty of committing a Cardinal listening sin — not showing up for the event. However, he realized it, made amends, and created value by implementing a positive listening process with Jennifer. There are no failures when you learn.  LISTENING PAYS…..IF YOU MAKE THE INVESTMENT!

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