Being an active listener is about hearing what others say and understanding and responding to their needs, feelings and perspectives. To become a truly effective listener involves being present, focused and non-judgmental in the moment. Essential listening skills include gratitude, vulnerability, self-awareness and resilience.

Gratitude helps you to appreciate your team members’ contributions, recognise their work’s positive aspects and build stronger relationships based on trust and mutual respect. Practising gratitude can help reduce stress, increase motivation and improve overall well-being.

Embracing vulnerability allows you to be authentic, honest and transparent with your team members. By acknowledging weaknesses and limitations you can create a safe and supportive environment where others feel comfortable sharing their vulnerabilities and taking risks.

Self-awareness helps you understand strengths, weaknesses, triggers and biases. By developing self-awareness you can identify areas for improvement, manage your emotions more effectively, and communicate more authentically with others.

Finally, use your breath to stay focused, calm and centred in high-pressure situations. By practising conscious breathing, you can regulate your emotions, reduce stress, and increase their capacity for resilience and adaptability.