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As a kid, I loved hearing John Madden’s bellowing voice on Sunday Night Football. I knew nothing about the sport, but Madden’s infectious enthusiasm had a way of making me put down my homework and run downstairs to the TV room to see what was so hilarious or outrageous about a fumble at the 40 yard line!

During the pre and post game shows, I had no idea what plays or strategies he was talking about, but his exuberant love for the game and devotion for his players was well known. Following his passing this week, it was interesting to read about some of the life lessons he taught his players. Present and future business leaders can appreciate one lesson in particular.

Kyle Kroeger, president of North Sky Capital shared Madden’s sage advice, ‘Coaches have to watch for what they don’t want to see and listen to what they don’t want to hear.’

Kroeger adds “This is true for business leaders such as myself as well as other roles in life like being a parent. It is difficult to pay attention to things we don’t want to hear, but it is absolutely essential in today’s volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous [world].”

Your takeaway: What opinions or criticisms are you avoiding? What important, but contrary information are you shutting out because it doesn’t fit your narrative? Listening in a mindful way doesn’t mean having to agree with what you don’t want to hear. It means considering all perspectives and all the facts when making critical life and business decisions.

Make mindful listening your goal in 2022. For how to do this, contact me at [email protected]   

 

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