Simon says, “Understand problems and issues from other people’s points of view.”
This technique goes nicely with “listen and learn.” Have you ever told someone about how a problem or issue looks from your point of view only to be told, “I don’t see it that way. Let me tell you what the real issues are here.”?
What is the not so subtle message to you? “You’ve got this all wrong. It’s not that way at all. You are either stupid or out of touch with the real world. I am the source of all things right and will condescend to educate you.”
You will never get that kind of demeaning approach from Simon. First, such disrespect is just not Simon’s style. More importantly, he knows by using that approach, he loses. Just as he gets most of his ideas from others, Simon also gets most of his insights and new perspectives from other people. How does he do that? He listens and learns. He takes time to understand your perspective, to get your read on things. When he walks away, he has more of what he needs to lead: he has what he knows and now has part of what you know too. It is only a matter of time until Simon becomes brilliant, one conversation at a time.