Are you Listening?

Published On: April 22nd, 2011By Categories: Blog

The Green House model is built on the coaching style of leadership. Listening is the most fundamental communication skill in coaching, but doing it well is very difficult. Listening fully and actively takes an enormous amount of energy and effort, which we do not often have. Because we know it is important for communication and relationships, most of us have developed very effective ways to look like we are listening when we really aren’t. This is called pseudo listening.
But what happens, where do our minds go, when we start to pseudo listen? What BLOCKS us from listening with our full attention?
One of my most pervasive listening blocks is Rehearsing.

Rehearsing is practicing (in our heads) what we are going to say while someone else is speaking. We start rehearsing when we have a point to make or something important to share.
Example: You asked your employee to come in early today to meet about the upcoming series of meetings and she did not show up when expected. She eventually arrives and immediately begins telling you about her hectic morning. While she is talking, you are busy rehearsing your speech about how disappointed you are that she didn’t show up as planned.

What are some of your listening blocks? What strategies have you found to be successful as you work through these blocks in order to be a listening, coaching leader?