The Power of Asking People What They Think AND then Really Listening and Hearing What They Say

The Power of Asking People What They Think - AND then Really Listening and Hearing What They Say.

By: J. Glenn Ebersole, Jr., Chief Executive of J. G. Ebersole Associates and The Renaissance Group™

It truly amazes me how often in too many businesses there is such an aversion to sincerely asking people (employees, customers, suppliers, vendors, et al) what they think. During my 35 year professional career, I have witnessed countless missed opportunities to gain insight and powerful information in business because someone did not stop and ask "What Do You Think?" Or if they did ask, they "listened" but did not "hear" what the person said. Although many people and businesses tout their ability to "listen," I want to know the more important attribute of whether they also have the ability to "hear."

A reference to Henry David Thoreau was made in one of my business advisory boards while I was facilitating the meeting and asking each business owner there - "What Do You Think?" and then further stating how interested I was in what they thought and how important it was to me. Recently I discovered the source and actual quote from Thoreau and want to share that with you.

In "Life Without Principle," Henry David Thoreau stated ..... "The greatest compliment that was ever paid to me was when one asked me what I thought, and attended to my answer. I am surprised, as well as delighted, when this happens, it is such a rare use he would make of me as if he were acquainted with the tool" ......

There is tremendous power in asking people what they think. If one is sincere and not only listens to, but also hears the reply. Why not amaze and delight someone today while conducting your business and ask them - "What Do You Think?" and be prepared to receive some insightful and powerful information to help you and your business.

And in the spirit expressed by Henry David Thoreau, I do value what you think and would like to ask you - "What Do You Think about this newsletter?" Please let me know by contacting Glenn Ebersole at I promise to listen and to hear you.


J. Glenn Ebersole, Jr. is a multi-faceted professional, who is recognized as a visionary, guide and facilitator in the fields of marketing, public relations, management, and engineering. He is the Founder & Chief Executive of the Lancaster, PA based multi-disciplinary & strategic thinking consulting practices, J. G. Ebersole Associates and The Renaissance Group™. He is a Certified Facilitator and business and strategic thinking and planning coach to a diverse list of clients. Also...

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