Listening is the focal quality of servant leadership. As a servant leader, you should naturally possess the desire of wanting to serve others. You understand that the well-being of your employees is your top priority. You also recognize that they can provide valuable input to the team. This is why communication is so important in every business.
Listening is important concerning their well-being. A lot of employees experience low morale from time to time. It may stem from personal concerns outside of work such as financial or family problems.
Another root cause might be factors inside the office, such as feeling burnt out in work or experiencing inappropriate treatment from other staff. In some cases, they may experience physical pain like sickness or emotional distress like anxiety or depression. These factors can highly affect their morale in the workplace and may lead to poor performance.
If you noticed someone on your team who is feeling down or having a rough day, why not invite them to sit down and talk things over? Don’t wait for them to come to you. Take the initiative.
Of course, you might not be a licensed therapist or a trained expert that can provide professional advice. But what’s the best thing you can do as a leader? Listen. Really listen.
Listen attentively as they open up. Don’t interrupt! Let them express freely what’s in their minds. Take in what they’re saying. You’ll be surprised how some people don’t really need solutions to their problems. They just want someone to listen. Be that someone.
Listening and showing empathy go hand-in-hand. Listening is useless if it goes right out of your head. As you understand things from their perspective, show empathy. Without being emotionally invested, try to put yourself on their situation. This will help you to understand things from their perspective. This, in turn, can lead you to provide them with the best practical help that you can offer.
What are other practical ways you can show empathy in the workplace? Consider using these phrases the next time you go to work:
A good leader should understand the strengths and weaknesses of their employees, but a great leader recognizes their own positives and negatives too. Self-awareness is a vital trait every servant leader should have.
Self-awareness is defined as being acquainted with your values and personality. You recognize that you’re imperfect and that you tend to have a weak perspective from certain things.
Self-awareness is such an important trait that a leader should possess, for it develops emotional intelligence. It helps you to acknowledge your limitations and know what things you need to work on to be a better leader. When you are aware of your traits, habits, and emotions, and how your actions affect others, you will be able to manage your emotions and make better, sound decisions. This, in turn, will motivate others to do the same.
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