The power of listening

Author: John Walsh and Lisa Falkingham
Commentator: Carol Read

Posted in: Transforming Leadership
From: Issue 14

WHAT WE THINK

If we want to create an environment where we can bring about change, we have to be prepared to really listen to what individuals are saying. Lisa and John highlight that it is easy to go through the motions and be convinced that you have the answers, when in fact if you fail to actively listen you may miss what is important for that other person.

The blog post works well by including narratives which we can all relate to and enable us to make sense of the positive action of making space to develop ourselves to support others. Life is not a tick box activity and we need to move away from thinking that measures that quality healthcare in that way too. The reason I became a nurse was to ‘be there’ with the patient as someone had been there for me when I was seriously ill. Those precious trusted conversations matter to people and offer hope, understanding and awareness.

To bring about change the same active listening skills are needed. Understand what matters and then reflect how you can support a way forward for the individual.

Stephen Covey illustrates the power of listening for understanding and his video is worth viewing to supplement John and Lisa’s blog post. On a similar note a TedTalk by William Ury provides a call to action for a listening revolution.

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Carol joined the Horizons Team in December 2014 as an NHS England Fellow and curator of The EdgeNHS...


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