Covey's Concept of Empathic Listening

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Rex Mason
Journal Entry
Covey’s Concept of Empathic Listening
11/22/2010
Management 501, a curriculum rich in principles regarding issues both personal and professional, has presented a myriad of concepts which represent tremendous truths applicable to the concept of self improvement. Senge, Sholtes and Covey, internationally renowned authors, provide a wealth of knowledge which empowers individuals to effect life changing decisions through the planning, doing, studying and acting (PDSA) upon these concepts. It is amazing that as others witness change in us, via the practical application of these principles, many are encouraged to affect the same in themselves. Of all the many concepts and principles I’ve studied throughout the “journey” of this course, the many hours of reading and analysis, nothing has touched me or affected me more than the concept of “empathic listening”. This is difficult for most because our focus is not on what others have to say, but what we desire to say. We listen with impatient politeness, waiting for an opportunity to express our thoughts, without sincere empathy for the concerns of others. And even during the course of vocal interaction, our desire is not one of dialog but of competitive discussion, where we interact with a defensive emphasis of proving our point versus compassion for our colleague’s or friends interests. Using the PDSA formula (cycle), I have made a personal commitment to master this concept. Mastering this model in my opinion, will add tremendously to myself as a person, and do much to make deposits in the emotional bank accounts of others. The formula, so to speak, involves a set of four developmental stages that we use as blueprint to monitor our progress. This culminates in the ability to demonstrate, though our interaction that we are truly giving our heartfelt attention to what the other person is trying to communicate to us.

Since this is somewhat a living document in nature, I have...
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