Wednesday, August 03, 2016

What Listening Has Over Talking

About a year ago, I was researching a piece for MEL that tried to determine if there was such a thing as the perfect speaking voice. During that process, I interviewed a voice coach, who said that, really, the sign of a good speaker is being able to convey the sense that he's listening -- the quality of the voice didn't much matter. I found that fascinating. The piece ended up being shelved, but that remark stayed with me.

A few weeks ago, Vox's Ezra Klein wrote a piece about Hillary Clinton, in which he asked her friends and colleagues to explain what they know about her that the general public doesn't. The answer, over and over again, was that she's a great listener, which is why they thought she'd make a great president.

Klein's article made me think back to my interview with the voice coach. And out came this MEL piece about the value of listening over talking. I'm pretty pleased with this one -- hope you enjoy.