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).

Listen to Like You

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?  

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  • Beth Margerison / March 25, 2018 at 10:41 am

    Peg, great article and so true! In any area of business, customer service (allowing extra time, actively listening, and follow through) is usually the #1 complaint, not skill. Looking forward to more articles!

    • Peg Calvario / March 27, 2018 at 8:03 pm

      Thank you Beth for your comment. And imagine if we all gave extra time for actively listening and follow through in all our conversations. We’d change our lives.

  • Ed Spayd / March 28, 2018 at 1:07 pm

    Hi, Peg

    A lot of truth in this read! Unfortunately in the medical world the surgeons and Dr’s are on such tight schedules and are being directed not to take the extra 3 minutes that the number being sued is probably on the rise. Good news for the attorney world. Happy Easter!

    • Peg Calvario / March 28, 2018 at 1:33 pm

      Thank you Ed for that perspective. I’m certain that your capacity to listen deeply and long to your prospects and clients has led to your real estate career success. As always great to hear from you!

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