Blog Post

Listening to ignite rather than listening to reply

Posted to Gurteen Knowledge-Log by David Gurteen on 29 December 2013



Listening to ignite rather than listening to reply
WeblogGurteen Knowledge Log
Knowledge LetterAppears in the Gurteen Knowledge Letter issue: 162
Posted DateSunday 29 December 2013 11:57 GMT
Posted ByDavid Gurteen
CategoriesConversation; Knowledge Cafe
PeopleNancy Kline , Stephen Covey

Twenty or more years ago I came across this statement from Stephen Covey in talking about his fifth habit "Seek First to Understand, Then to be Understood" and it has had a profound impact on me.

Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.

And then over Christmas I stumbled over a short video interview with Nancy Kline where she says this:

I want to be listening in a way that is more interested in where you will go next than I am in what I am going to say next.

Credit: Nancy Kline

She thinks that the attention of one human being to another is an act of creation. Watch the video - it's only 2 mins long. Although, I have never quite articulated this in this past its always been an implicit principle behind my Knowledge Cafes.

It may seem strange but listening although usually seen as passive can be very powerful action!

Youu can learn more about Nancys work here.

The quality of everything we do depends on the quality of the thinking we do first.

The quality of our thinking depends on the way we treat each other while we are thinking.

Credit: Nancy Kline

If you are interested in Knowledge Management, the Knowledge Café or the role of conversation in organizational life then you my be interested in this online book I am writing on Conversational Leadership
David Gurteen

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