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Listening is Culture Change

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Listening does not cause culture change. Listening is culture change.

Culture changes at the very moment you listen, not later.

In the moment of listening, your interpretation of the choices you are making is suspended. In truly listening, fixed positions and preconceptions disappear into a malleable and fluid world.  Culture stops changing the moment you stop listening, the moment choices are made and the past-based point of view is fixated and transparent.

In their efforts to change organizations, leaders come face-to-face with the invisible grip of culture. This grip thwarts many heartfelt efforts to have their organization’s future be fundamentally different from its past, even in the face of urgent requirements for cost savings, innovation, customer service, and breakthrough performance. Projects and training, while effective, do not seem to produce the magic needed to alter and sustain people’s behavior in a culture rooted in history. What’s needed is more personal. The magic begins with truly listening to those around you. To start, people need to recognize that they do not listen this way.

The Power of Not Listening.

The way to stop a culture from shifting is to make sure people do not listen to one another openly, without preconceptions, and with deep appreciation of the feelings and concerns of others. New markets, new businesses, new levels of growth, and new relationships are prevented by ‘not listening’.

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