Use Feeling to listen for what makes people proud.
The secret of all leaders is that they know how to make people feel proud. They may make people feel proud of their country, race, religion, sex, the company they work for, the neighborhood they live in, the work they do, or even the thoughts they are thinking. Just remember how Jesus made people proud to be human, Martin Luther King Jr. made people proud to be black, and Germaine Greer made people proud to be female.
If we want to draw people toward us to help change the world, we should keep in mind that first and foremost, people want to feel proud. Engage them in thinking about our ideas, but in a way that makes them feel proud and excited.
How do you do this? Discuss about things that make people feel proud. Ask people questions that make them feel proud. These discussions and questions elicit responses from people that make them feel effective. These questions might be…
What are you doing right?
What are you proud of recently?
Avoid the usual questions like, “What’s wrong with you?” What are your problems?” and “What are you failing at?” because those kind of questions tend to make people feel anxious, ashamed and defeated before they begin. Discussions based on negative questions go around and around and seldom lead to productive action.
As a leader, we want people to step in voluntarily and help the cause. We want people to empathise and rally our cause. And a good way to move towards this is to make them proud of themselves, and to make them feel proud in the context of our ideas. For example, when we talk to students we ask them “effective questions” that are likely to get them relate their educational experience with that of nation building. Like…
“What are you most proud of having learned to help you grow to a higher level?”
“What are you most proud of in the way you have used your learning to build you nation?”
With these “effective questions,” leader’s people feel proud of themselves at the same time relating their educational decisions to nation building as such.
This is the Feeling part of our listening. We’re listening for what makes people feel proud and effective in the context of our ideas. As a result, we are “leading” them to find pride and excitement in our campaign. That may allow them, at the very least, to hear us, and at the very most, to help us.