"A good listener is not only popular everywhere, but after a while he gets to know something." Wilson Mizner
There is much more to this quote than the obvious and it’s well worthwhile to take note of. Two things are absolutely critical for leaders today: gathering data and influencing the actions of others. If people find that, because you are actually listening to them, they will not only enjoy spending time with you, but they will be more likely to share information with you—information they would not willingly share with someone they feel does not respect them. There have also been some very interesting studies conducted on the power of listening. Among the findings were that active listeners were able to establish a more productive rapport with others as well as having more influence on their decisions. When one puts this listening thing into perspective it’s easy to see how important it is in a world where team cohesion and influencing the decisions of others are key to success.
Good luck on your journey!