Empathy, advocacy and social media: the importance of listening

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Guest blog for Global Marketing Alliance

Consider, for a moment, the words of American author and motivational speaker, Stephen R Covey: “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” This quote is, I believe, one of the most powerful I have ever come across.

Habit 5 in Covey’s book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, focuses on principles of empathic communication: that is, ‘seek first to understand, then to be understood’.

Empathic listening means listening with the intent to understand, to get inside another person’s frame of reference or world view.

When you truly understand your audience, you can focus on problem-solving – showing how you can help your audience overcome their challenges and achieve their goals with your product or service.

Covey explains that, in the communications industry, we rarely diagnose before we prescribe. We dive straight in with answers and have a tendency to filter what we hear through our own paradigms, reading our own autobiography into other people’s lives. We answer with what we would do, but that isn’t always likely to be the correct answer. We often don’t put ourselves in other people’s shoes.

Continue reading at: https://www.the-gma.com/social-media-importance-listening

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