Listening and Speaking Skills

Listening and Speaking Skills by Walter McIntyre

A process improvement team is from the beginning a team of investigators. They investigate process performance by looking for improvement opportunities and the root causes of problems. All of us have seen detective programs on TV where a sleuth investigates a crime. They ask questions, listen, set up stakeouts, and eventually discover what really happened. Process improvement teams follow the same strategy. They ask questions, listen, and monitor processes. All of this to discover the root causes of process problems. An improvement team will use all four basic communication skills: reading, writing, listening, and speaking. These skills become the lubrication that allows a diverse group of team members to work through an improvement project successfully.


After putting in several years as a manager in a sales organization, I have found that the key to training up a quality sales person is developing their understanding of what I would call the essence of selling. The misunderstandings that exist regarding selling and the sales process are many and profound. Sometimes these misunderstandings are right there in the hearts and minds of the trainers who are teaching your staff to sell.