If I listen, I learn everything I could ever need to know about anything that’s relevant to my life.

Physics shows that certain materials carry sound better than others. If you put your hand to the ground, you can feel vibration where you might not feel it just standing. Google seismographs – it’s why they exist. As a strategic leader, I get down low to the ground and feel for rumblings. I observe constantly. I listen for what’s not being said under the words shooting towards me. I do it with absolutely everyone. Every single person who interacts with an organization has a perspective. Don’t you want to know what that is?

I do. And then I want to sort it out in my head and puzzle all those perspectives together to see what’s really going on at the ground level, because that’s where clients are standing. When I am tracking what’s coming, I can hit the idea button in my mind and share it with my boss. Those ideas are the initiatives that grow our company because they come from reality not an isolated report. Reports are indicators, and rarely do they get us in front of what’s coming.

Eventually those initiatives drive the change that makes us better. My boss cares about this company. The Board wants the company to thrive. Everyone does. But someone has to be the tracker, who listens deeply from the ground up and delivers the message higher, suggested solutions attached. In fact the more of us that do that, the stronger we get as an organization – that’s called living our mission.

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