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Holiday time is uponus. We look forward to spending time with loved-ones. Usually. Some advice I once received applies to this time of year, and to leadership in general. Rather than engage in a debate with loved ones, or worse yet, an argument, take the time to listen. Really listen.

When you are sitting across the table from one another, it might be easy to engage in an argument about the 2016 presidential election, or a myriad of other topics. Every one of us has a point of view and sometimes we want to share. But what’s the point? Are yo trying to convince another person of your perspective, or are you truly intereste in learning a different perspective? Regardless of the topic, it’s often better to listen than it is to be heard.

Earlier in my career when I led large teams, I learned quickly that the best way to increase an employee’s involvement was to listen to their ideas and help them figure out the best way to implement them. We can’t implement every great idea, but we can listen authentically and empathetically. Even if the idea is not implemented, they will have been heard. This helps build relationships and your credibility as a leader.

This is especially critical when leading change. Be humble enough to recognize that you don’t have all the answers. Be inclusive enough to have your people help affect the change. Ask for ideas to make a smoother transition. Coach them to help you lead the organization through the change.

This holiday season, take the time to listen. Don’t try to change other people’s perspectives. Use it as an opportunity to learn. You might just be the better for it.

Dedicated to your profitable transformation

Steve

 

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