The best managers in the world understand different things that others do not. One of them is that every single person you will ever meet will know something a lot better than you. This is why great managers like German Trujillo Manrique make it a habit to actively listen. Unfortunately, most people out there do not know much about this and even if they think they listen, this is not what actually happens.
Human beings do not just want others to listen. They want to also be understood. This offers a high sense of freedom and value. In a business environment this is highly important since it empowers people to actually express themselves. If another person does not listen to us, we naturally end up feeling minimized and impeded.
Every single manager needs to be aware of what listening is and how important it is. It is possible that you know a lot more than the person that you talk to. Even so, it is impossible to know exactly what the other person knows. Understanding can be vital to what is necessary to complete a thought or even a project. This is why it is always in your best interest to offer people the possibility to actively contribute. As you listen to those that are around you and you have the presupposition that you know everything, both you and the other person end up in a situation in which improper communication is in place.
Managers have to work with different people that come from different backgrounds. It is common to see that communication is not proper simply because of different interests. When people have different interests it is easy to think that conversation would be boring. Those exact people can have some really interesting perspectives that cannot be developed alone. By simply thinking that you have nothing to learn you can end up losing valuable information that will make everything a lot better in the future for both you and the business.
What is particularly important is to be sure that you listen with a true purpose. Actively listening is not the same thing as just listening, contrary to what you might think right now. It does not matter if you are a manager or just a team member that listens to the indications of a manager. You need to be sure that you actually listen to what others say. This automatically means being aware of what is said actually means.
Remember that active listening might seem to be what you are doing but it involves so much more than what you initially believe. For instance, active listening also means looking at the person that is in front of you so you can see body language reactions.
On the whole, as a manager and even as a leader, be sure that you do all that you can in order to understand what listening actually is. You need to be careful and never just listen without being aware of what the other people are saying.