The Worst Kind of Listening

July 23 2017
By: Terry L. Mathis

Ever had a leader who didn't listen? What could be worse than that? The answer is: the leader who listens then completely ignoresThe Worst Kind of Listening the information to pursue his or her own agenda. Not only does this disappoint the contributor but hurts the credibility of the leader. Certainly it is the prerogative of leaders to make the final decisions; but they also should feel responsible for setting accurate expectations for what will happen with advice from direct reports, especially if they have asked for input. This can be done up front by explaining that a course of action is already in motion and will take something significant to change it, or afterwards by explaining the rationale involved in not taking the advice.

Ignoring input is a sure way to dry up the flow of information from subordinates and that can be catastrophic in the future when their input and support is critically needed.

Terry L. Mathis

Terry Mathis, Founder and retired CEO of ProAct Safety, has served as a consultant and advisor for top organizations the world over. A respected strategist and thought leader, Terry has authored five books, numerous articles, videos and blogs, and is known for his dynamic and engaging presentations. EHS Today has named him one of the '50 People Who Most Influenced EHS' four consecutive times. Business leaders and safety professionals seek Terry's practical insight and unique ability to introduce new perspectives that lead to real change.

Subscribe to our newsletter