When I was a young child, we sometimes played a game called "Whisper Down the Lane.'' Five or six of us would sit in a row, and the first person would make up something and whisper it into the ear of the next person. The story would then be passed down the line in this fashion. The fun came in hearing the story repeated aloud by the last person in line. Invariably, it turned out to be quite different from the original version.
While this is amusing as a children's game, it is not a very amusing situation in real life, especially in business. If you've ever heard your instructions, advice, or presentation repeated to you in distorted form by an employee, coworker, or colleague, you know what I’m talking about. The success of many of our business activities depends on how well we listen. Studies show that we spend about 80 percent of our waking hours communicating, and at least 45 percent of that time listening.
But a...(register to read more)