This month’s leadership quote:

“A leader that won’t listen to others will eventually be surrounded by people that have nothing to say.”

-Andy Stanley

When you ask most leaders if they listen, they will say yes. And yet, when you ask most employees if their boss listens, few say yes. Why is this?

Here’s my theory.

Most employees believe that to speak up is to risk being viewed as a troublemaker, disagreeable, not a team player, etc. etc. And most leaders believe they “have an open door policy”. They further believe that if folks have something to say, they will stop in and say it. And often they do. That is, the folks that have the courage to speak up. Sometimes though, it’s the quiet ones that wait to be asked that have the most to say.

And, on the flip side, how we respond when folks do speak up, matters too. Instead of making a case for why we want it done the way we said, what if instead we simply said, tell me more, what are you thinking or simply, thank you for the feedback. 

Not always easy to pause and ask. And, if we don’t, we risk being surrounded by people that have nothing to say.



Why Vistage Works

Elisa K. Spain

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1 Comment

  • Jane Lazar

    I disagree, i think employees feel their employers don’t listen because when they suggest something the boss says “no” or “we’ll see” or something dismissive like that. in reality, the employer did listen but does not happen to agree and it’s easier and faster to just say “we’ll see” then give the reasons they disagree at that moment.

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