Effective Communication

How often do you really listen?

December 6, 2021
min read

More recently, I’ve been training early-stage founders on how to do ‘peer coaching’ – coach and be coached by another founder at a similar level on a regular basis.

Their feedback has been fascinating – “It’s such a simple thing to do, but so powerful” said one founder. “What is it about it?” I asked. The reply was – “Just being listened to and not given advice. In our society there’s an expectation to be very good at giving an opinion, not at listening.”

A quote to keep in mind

“When … someone really hears you without passing judgment on you, without trying to take responsibility for you, without trying to mould you, it feels damn good! … When I have been listened to and when I have been heard, I am able to re-perceive my world in a new way and to go on. It is astonishing how elements that seem insoluble become soluble when someone listens, how confusions that seem irremediable turn into relatively clear flowing streams when one is heard.”

– Carl Rogers, humanistic psychologist

How to really listen

One of the cornerstones of coaching is Reflective Listening – listening carefully and repeating back to the other person what they’ve said.

This simple yet powerful technique helps the other person get to better understand themselves. This enables them to find solutions without being given advice or told what to do – how empowering is that?

All you need to do is listen and then use the following phrases as a starting point:

💡 What I’m hearing is …

💡 What you seem to be saying is …

💡 It sounds like you’re …

Try it out and experience the magic of listening!

Author Portrait
Written by
Mica Vaipan

Performance & wellbeing coach, entrepreneur. Formerly startup founder, tech startup COO and investment banker.

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