Listening is the first step in understanding
Jeff Roe, the CEO of our parent company, Premera Blue Cross, recently shared an article that challenged all of us to learn, grow and get better, individually and collectively as a society. We can get better and must get better to ensure inclusion, equity and respect for all.
With America feeling so unsettled, many of us want to be part of the solution. How do we support those who have been excluded? How do we as individuals and as organizations move forward in building a more just world?
It’s a complicated issue and we certainly don’t have all of the answers. We can, however, suggest a first step: become a better listener. Listening can help us stand in another person’s truth for at least a moment, begin to build understanding and trust, and point the way to concrete actions we can take. Active listening may need to be intentionally taught.
To get started, here are some tips from Fast Company: "6 Ways To Become A Better Listener."
1. Listen to learn, not to be polite
2. Quiet your agenda
3. Ask more questions
4. Pay attention to your talk/listen ratio
5. Repeat back what you’ve heard
6. Actually wait until someone is done talking before you respond.
What’s true for individuals is also true for organizations. Companies are, perhaps for the first time, now opening up space for people to talk about this difficult issue.
We want to hear from you. How are you or your organization responding?