The cost of not listening is so big and vast that it is difficult to quantify and measure. Listening and not listening intangibly touch everything we do in our business and personal lives.
Since little time, attention, or resources are given to building listening skills, it’s not surprising most people aren’t aware of the costs of not listening and why it’s a problem they’re not trying to solve.
The problem is like color blindness—we see but can’t distinguish color. With listening blindness, we hear sounds but can’t distinguish the meaning of the message.
The result of not listening is death by 1,000 cuts. We barely feel the surface wounds until the problem is so big we can’t stop the bleeding.
Frankly, the more I focus on helping people learn to listen, the more I realize how many problems listening actually solves. Not listening is at the core of so many problems we face, and listening to understand is at the core of good problem-solving.
Have you ever considered you might be solving the wrong problem? That you might be fixing something that doesn’t need to be fixed? Answering something that isn’t being asked?