Why Listening increases your power of influence

A successful, fast-thinking Director in a multinational organization told me that he didn’t listen because he if he did, he would send the message that he was agreeing with what the other person was saying, and therefore accepting it. He didn’t want that to happen.

He is a high-achiever and at that time he had already reached a high level of success in his career. He hired me because he wanted to drive a major change in his organization, but some of the other Directors were working against him. He hired me to help him increase his influencing power and find a way to win them over.

During our Coaching Session on this topic he realized that Listening was one of the keys to increase his influencing power. As he started taking the time to listen with curiosity and without judgement (he had to tame his eagerness to get his own point across), he quickly experienced a change in the dynamics of his conversations with his peers. They started having real conversations and finding ways to cooperate instead of competing.

Here is what he learnt

Listening makes it easier for you to bring people on board 

  • It allows you to understand the other person’s perspective, aspirations, needs and even their fears. This helps you understand what is really driving their behavior, and thus to build a bridge between what you want and what they need. This increases their willingness to listen to you and support you.

Listening makes you special

  • In today’s fast-paced, high-pressure work environment, having someone who cares enough to stop and genuinely listen to you is rare. You are one of the few successful high-achievers who does it. Listening makes the other person feel seen, heard and valued. This helps you to build connection and trust. You become special and make the other person feel special too. This increases their willingness to support you.

Listening helps you to find smarter solutions

  • Whether you like it or not, no matter how smart you are, you only see a part of the whole. If you are willing to move beyond the limitations of your assumptions and listen to the other person, you can see things from different angles and find new and better ways to implement your ideas. When you generate a solution in collaboration with others, they feel part of it and therefore are more willing to support you to make it happen. By gaining their support, you can implement change must faster and more easily. You are then recognized as a brilliant and charismatic innovator who is capable of engaging people to drive change.

Do you see how Listening can increase your influencing power?