Sometimes it’s easier for managers to give instructions rather than wait for employees to come up with solutions.Although this way of managing leads to quick actions and results, it inevitably stunts the growth of an organisation, says Kevin Cashman in his new book, “The Pause Principle.”
Eventually, employees won’t want to speak up, and they will become too dependent on their bosses. Instead of allowing this to happen, leaders should give team members the opportunity to think things through on their own.
“Pause a bit longer to let groups struggle and strain more as they explore ideas, options, and deeper solutions,” he writes. If you always have the answers, you’re “unintentionally creating dependency, stunting the growth of others, and sacrificing transformative breakthroughs.”
This leadership skill requires the ability to master authentic listening, which is not the same as waiting for the other person to stop speaking. Unfortunately, those who need to listen most — the ones who can make the most difference — are also the poorest listeners.
“When we see ourselves as the quintessential expert, the most experienced or accurate person in the room, we position ourselves to fall into a listening black hole,” he says.
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