How to Improve Relationships, Reduce
Stress, and Be More Productive by Using the Power of Listening
by Larry Barker Ph.D., Kittie Watson Ph.D.
St. Martinís Press USA
A fundamental skill for any coach is the ability to listen. In fact, listening is the most powerful part of communication
according to the authors. It doesnít matter how great you are as a speaker; if someone chooses not to listen to you, you canít make them.
However, you can understand the different ways that
people listen. The authors outline four listening styles: People, Action, Content and Time Oriented. There is an assessment in the book that lets you uncover your
listening preferences. Your listening preference can have a significant impact on whom you coach with the most ease and effectiveness. Anyone who coaches can benefit
from learning their listening preference
Another important awareness for coaches is that we can
experience listener burn-out. The authors offer self-observation exercises for how to notice when youíre reaching this point and ways to renew your listening reserves. Noticing your own burnout will help you stay in
condition to coach.
The authors are both researchers, so the book is
well-documented. It is not written like an academic book, however. It is rich with anecdotes and examples and is written in simple, easy to follow language. You can read it
in an afternoon and come away with a deepened appreciation for the gift we offer others when we deeply listen to them.