Leadership Blogathon: Kaleidoscope – The Vox PR, Text 100 Leadership Offsite

Have you been in a situation where you realised that you were mentally forming answers to someone’s questions even before they had completed the question? And then found that your response was way off the mark.

One of the discussions that lingered in my mind during the Leadership Offsite was the importance of active listening. I believe the first step to becoming an effective leader is hearing out people. Many of us are in a hurry either to prove a point, display our intelligence or simply impatient or worse, we like to hear own voices. Better listening skills do help us to be better at our jobs and in our personal relationships. A better listener is more likely to have the ability to motivate, influence and negotiate and is rarely misunderstood – skills that are definite aces in today’s workplace.

And why should we listen

  • deeper understanding
  • better preparedness while responding
  • building a connect with the person

Here are a few tips on active listening.

  • Focus on the person – Do not let yourself be distracted and do not start forming your responses
  • Convey interest – Nod occasionally. Do not cross your hands across your chest or look beyond the person
  • Clarify – Summarise a point or clarify intermittently. Show the person that you are with him
  • Reply – Pause, gather your thoughts and respond clearly

This is a skill and with most of us it does not come easily and therefore learning to listen actively requires conscious effort and will. Try it and you will see people accepting you as a responsive and concerned leader.

"Listen" your way Up the corporate ladder !

The ear of the leader must ring with the voices of the people ~ Woodrow Wilson


“Leadership Blogathon” entry submitted by Joshy Mathews, Managing Director, VOX Public Relations India & GRO (Global Resource Optimisation)

The article was originally published on


Image source: http://bit.ly/xkT6cH



  1. Neha Kulshrestha · February 7, 2012

    Active listening, definitely is an important aspect of ‘Being a Leader’.And I believe the quality to withheld your racing thoughts and give out your ears to others should be cultivated early in life, it surely helps in all situations and stages in life.Nice read for cutlets like us in the PR world.

  2. joshymathews · February 7, 2012

    Thanks Neha, it definitely is a skill that will go a long way in your personal and professional lives.

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