The Listening Quotient

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 Your company will rise or fall on its ability to listen. Listen to each other, listen to your customers and clients and listen to the market. 

In a world where so many people are talking over each other, and as a result, people don’t feel seen or heard, the conscious companies that listen will stand out and rise. 

Listening is a soft skill, but soft skills are the future. Building a better mousetrap isn’t enough anymore. Hard skills can be outsourced. We are entering an age where the human spirit is rising and it won’t tolerate a lower vibration or interaction. And your company, to make the impact it wants to make, must get better at listening. 

If you had to rate your own listening skills on a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being you’re the best listener you know and others feel safe and heard around you, how would you rate yourself? 

Now look at your leadership team. Rate each of them on a scale of 1-10. 

Now look at your entire company. How would you rate each team member? 

And as you assess your company’s “Listening Quotient” (LQ), do so with an ear for your blindspots. Don’t go in trying to see how you’re doing it right. Go in trying to find how you can be better. Keep digging for how you can stimulate progress towards a higher LQ. 

One of the best skills to develop in your organization is the consulting skill of asking questions and digging deeper to understand. I call this "going 5 levels deep". When you ask 5 questions before commenting, it helps you turn over more puzzle pieces the person is holding onto. Their answers create a more complete picture, not only resulting in you knowing how to better serve them, but also leaving them feeling heard in a way that rarely happens in their life. 

When I feel talked at, or even just misunderstood, I withdraw from the conversation. I won’t throw my pearls before swine. The same is true for your team members. If you always have an agenda, a company goal, a company line, or are moving too fast to settle into really hearing them, they will withdraw their best from you. 

This is how companies lose talent. It’s how they lose contracts. Your LQ directly impacts your retention and your market share. The conscious companies that invest in their LQ will rise while the others continue to compete over hard skills and old-fashioned growth strategies. 

With the stakes this high, you should have a process in place that evaluates the LQ of your company on a regular basis. You should weave it into your culture. Because when you do, you will find a deeper, richer well of high performance that surges through your company.

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