What is the most important quality in being a successful construction CEO?

Asked by
Charles T.

At Hornberger Management Company, we often conduct surveys with construction CEOs and one of the questions we ask is "What do you as a construction CEO consider to be your most important quality for running a successful construction firm?" We receive many different answers but the one most common answer is "Being a good Listener."

Learning to become a good listener is a skill we all can develop, but successful CEOs seem to have mastered this art.

Below are a few tips to becoming a better listener:

- Listen twice as much as you talk.
- Keep your eyes focused on the speaker's eyes to communicate interest.
- Control your emotions and do not be reactionary.
- Listen carefully and do not allow distractions to invade the conversation (phone rings off).
- Concentrate on what's being said, and also on what the speaker may not be saying.
- Ask questions to get a better understanding.
- Repeat and summarize what you understand for clarity.

Once the speaker believes you have listened and understand what is being said, he or she will be more receptive to listening to you.