Get Someone to Like You in 3 Minutes
Making an impression is important. As leaders in our work and life being likable is sometimes critical to building relationships with colleagues and others. So what can you do to quickly become likable? Could a simple skill like listening improve your likability and your overall leadership effectiveness? The act of listening has been proven to elevate your conversations, enrich your life, and is highly likely to impact your career as well.
In his best-selling book, Blink: The Power of Thinking without Thinking, Malcolm Gladwell shares the results of a study conducted to determine the likelihood of doctors being sued by their patients. In this study, roughly half of the doctors had never been sued. The other half had been sued at least twice. The research disclosed a specific difference between the two groups: The surgeons who had never been sued spent more than three minutes longer with each patient than those who had been sued did (18.3 minutes versus 15 minutes).
So what exactly took place during those extra three minutes?
The surgeons who had never been sued, in 3 minutes, allowed time for questions, and encouraged their patients to talk. They paid attention by listening and they showed that they cared.
Now if a procedure went awry and resulted in a lawsuit; it was either the internist or radiologist that was sued. Not one of the ‘listening surgeons.’ Why? Because the patient actually liked the surgeon, and, we typically do not sue people we like.
Respect and Trust
The real lesson isn’t about how to avoid getting sued. The lesson is how to quickly in about 3 minutes build a relationship. One founded in the other person liking and trusting you. Just as the most effective leadership is based on mutual respect and trust, not on a power or knowledge imbalance, the same applies in our work and life. Listening clearly needs to come first.
What do you think?