According to the late Stephen Covey, “communication is the most important skill in life.” In our star-struck culture, we are quick to hang the “great communicator” tag on the charismatic mega-church pastors or leaders whose preaching and oratory keep people on the edge of their seats. But actually, the two most important communication skills for leaders are: #1, being a great listener, and #2, using questions to gain information and reach conclusions and/or consensus.
These two skills are far more important than eloquent speaking. The people you are trying to lead will long remember the day you asked them for information or “what would you do?” advice. They will not forget the times you sat and genuinely listened to their input. Your spellbinding speech or sermon of last week will be forgotten soon after your spellbinding speech or sermon of this week, which will be forgotten soon after . . . you get the idea. The ability to speak eloquently may gather a crowd, but it won’t garner followers.
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"The best way to lead people into the future is to connect with them deeply in the present."
Kouzes & Posner