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My Best Advice for Leaders – Listen More!

My Best Advice for Leaders - Listen More!

Improve Your Leadership Skills

My definition of a leader: “A leader is someone who others will follow”.

To become a leader it’s important to acquire good communications skills. If people do not know where you want to take them and why, there will be a real reluctance to follow.

Good communications is not sending an email or some other form of electronic engagement. Effective communications is speaking to your people face to face or in the current environment online.

It’s taking the time both to speak to people and listen to their ideas and views.

It’s not a requirement that you adopt their suggestions or ideas, but it’s critical that you listen.

I believe that the number one demotivational factor is ‘nobody listens’ to me. I read this somewhere years ago and I believe it’s true, having seen evidence myself over the years.

I know you are busy, but are you leading or just managing? Great leaders take time to reply to people with courtesy and civility. Being under pressure is no excuse for bad manners, it’s more likely to demonstrate that you are not up to the job.

Of course, in every role there are elements of managing and leading and both need to get done. So, delegate the management tasks and focus on your creativity and leadership role. Is this not the reason you were appointed to the position?

Barack Obama personally took time each evening to reply to 12 pieces of communication received from ordinary Americans. Imagine how surprised and delighted you would be if you received a reply from the president of America. (A Promised Land – Barack Obama).

This surprise might also be applicable, if you took the time to meet and speak to each of your team on a regular basis.

Ensure these meetings become a priority, not a ‘to do’ when all the other stuff is done (it never will be).

A reminder of the reason for doing this: you do not know all the answers and never will; people who work with you and for you have lots of answers and solutions to problems, take time to listen.

When I coach leaders to communicate their business ideas, I explain to them that I do not have any answers. I cannot tell them the story that will excite a customer or an investor.

The particular skill I have is to listen to clients and their team, until I hear what I believe are the key messages that they need to articulate.

It’s not my job to put my words into other people’s mouths; this would be very unhygienic 😉

It is my job to help them create, rearrange, clarify, and, most importantly, simplify the story so that everybody sees the value and the opportunity of your offering.


If you wish to increase your leadership skills, while improving your ability to engage, learn to see things from the other persons perspective. (Walk in your listeners shoes).

“A leader is someone who others will follow”
Andrew Keogh