Archives: Art of Listening

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The ABC’s Of Business Development

Business development is not very complicated. Granted, it requires many to stray from a comfort zone, and the combination of science and art is often disconcerting; but the formula for success is not difficult to understand. If you know of a business development effort that isn’t producing, chances are someone is making it more complicated … Continue Reading

Where Communication, Marketing and Effective Business Development Begin

Every student of communication theory is familiar with the concept of Shared Experiences. This is the coveted sweet-spot where barriers fall, gaps are bridged, and — thanks to commonalities — communication takes place. Theoretically. It is a beautifully simple theory. But in practice, it is far from simple. A recent Seth Godin post, The People … Continue Reading

Redefine Listening and Reshape Business Development

I am an old dog. Learning new tricks, techniques or skill sets does not come easy. My 20-year old daughter, my wife and, I suspect, the team I am privileged to work with will all agree. But as I listened to Neil Harbisson’s TED presentation from earlier this year titled “I Listen to Colors” (a 10-minute video that will … Continue Reading

The Ultimate Business Development Question

Several years ago Fred Reichheld, among others, began working on a conversation and a system that would prompt organizations to rethink relationship with clients / customers. In his book, The Ultimate Question (now available in an updated 2.0 version), the discussion zeroes in on what the author defines as the ultimate measure of loyalty — whether … Continue Reading

Prescription For A Productive Dialogue

In the wake of another Sunday morning buffet of current affairs television programming, and on the eve of Independence Day celebration in the U.S., two thoughts occurred. First — one who subjects himself to variations of the same tired rhetoric and political posturing week-after-week must have masochistic tendencies. Second (and more productive), Sunday’s soundbite assessments … Continue Reading

The DNA Of Strategic Business Development

Labeling something as Strategic does not make it so. The presence of a plan, no matter the number of pages or accompanying detail, should not be mistaken for the existence of a strategy. Desk drawers are littered with detailed business development and marketing plans that are decidedly not strategic. (I know this from personal experience.) And even … Continue Reading

4 Keys To Better Business Development Conversations

Dialogue changes things. It connects people, seeds ideas, and is a critical thread in the fabric of relationship. And (at the risk of meddling), one reason relationships are so difficult is that genuine dialogue does not come easy. Self-interest,  the superficial and the politics of the moment serve to frame much of what passes for conversation. But … Continue Reading

A Missing Link In Business Development

In a provocative Inc. online post titled The Art of Listening Well (a great read), Eugene Raudsepp discusses one of two challenges to effective communication; we hear what we listen for. The second is closely related — Listening to Learn is in short supply. To the degree communication is about positioning, convincing, selling or converting, the … Continue Reading

The Intersection of The Art of Jazz and The Science of Listening

If movement (not to mention innovation) is difficult — whether in enterprise or on a personal front — difficulty listening might be part of the problem.  We spend considerable time on the topic here; but this presentation by jazz musician Stefon Harris offers insight into the critical role listening plays in progress and innovation. If … Continue Reading

Are We Losing Our Ability To Listen?

In an increasingly loud world voices, headlines, media and even strategic noises seem to compete for our attention.  The competition (naturally) gives rise to more creative approaches to capture a target’s ear.  And in the process there is plenty of reason to wonder whether anything is actually being heard. In this short video presentation, sound … Continue Reading

A Requiem For Relationships

There is no shortage of information and advice on relationships.  What it takes to make them work, fix them when they’re broken, build them, nurture them, leverage them. Counselors, coaches, philosophers, and theologians, all have devoted volumes to the subject. Seldom will anyone whisper, let alone proclaim the truth: relationships don’t work. I know — … Continue Reading

Why Nothing Changes

Thankfully we’ve survived the campaign antics of another election season in the U.S. And the news, whether your candidate won or lost, is that not much is likely to change. So we can relax. Fear mongering notwithstanding, two, four, even six years from now we’ll find ourselves a little older, to be sure; but, apart … Continue Reading

The Discipline of Listening vs. The Art of Messaging

Listening doesn’t come easy. For anyone (or any business) with a point of view, an opinion, a measure of conviction, and the means to disseminate a message listening is rarely what first comes to mind when addressing the communication process. Client feedback initiatives and market research notwithstanding, from the instant an infant realizes what it takes … Continue Reading