Dr Mark Goulston, Listening with a Beginner’s Mind – InnovaBuzz 305

Dr Mark Goulston

Dr Mark Goulston, Just Listen

In this episode, I’m really excited to have on as my guest, Dr Mark Goulston, author of the books, Get Out of Your Own Way, Just Listen, Talking to Crazy, among others, AND host of the My Wakeup Call podcast. Mark was a UCLA professor of Psychiatry for over 25 years and a former FBI and police hostage negotiation trainer. He’s been a change facilitator to Fortune 500 leaders, entrepreneurs and educators. He’s an influencer who helps other influencers become more influential. Mark has contributed to Harvard Business Review, Business Insider, Huffington Post, Fast Company, Psychology Today, Working Nation and Thrive Global and appears widely in the media including CNN, Wall St. Journal, NY Times, Fortune and Forbes.

In our discussion, Mark and I talked about:

  • Being a first class “noticer” to really understand your audience and your clients
  • Focusing your attention on what the other person is listening for
  • How to become compelling

Dr. Gleb Tsipursky in episode 271 introduced us to Mark.

Listen to the podcast to find out more.

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Focus on what people are listening for not just to what they are listening to. @MarkGoulston on #InnovaBuzz podcast Click To Tweet

Show Notes from this episode with Dr Mark Goulston, author of Just Listen

Key points and takeaways from this episode include:

  • Learn to listen into people’s eyes. Learn to listen with a beginner’s mind.
  • When you push solutions to people, it creates a barrier between their desperation and you. Throw away the solutions and just listen to them.
  • Learn how to listen into people so that they’ll feel they’re being felt by you. Feeling felt is not the same as being understood.
  • Focus on what people are listening for not just to what they are listening to.
  • As a coach or consultant, you want people to feel that you understood their situation, where they are coming from, and where they really want to go even if they haven’t told you anything yet.
  • The purest form of connecting is to listen without memory of desire.
  • Be a PAL. PAL stands for Purposeful Agendaless Listening.
  • Compelling has to come before convincing. You have to be compelling to open people’s minds and convince them. 
  • Trying to convince people too soon eliminates their ability to choose to hire you. You want to be compelling so that they can open up and choose to hear from you. 
  • The secret to closing more sales is to never answer a question on the first meeting.
  • When talking to people, listen for emotionally charged languages such as hyperboles and inflections. Dig deeper and let them open up more to you. The more they open up to you, the more they will want to hear what you have to say, and the more they open up to you, the more it makes you different from your competitor. 
  • Listen to what’s important, critical, and urgent to your clients. Important is a year from now, critical is within 3 to 5 months, and urgent is this week. 
  • Be a learn-it-all and not a know-it-all.
  • When you are able to create a “gotta have it” mindset with people, you never have to sell anyone. To create that “gotta have it”, you need to be able to trigger WHOA, WOW, HMMM, and YES, moments in everything that people see, read, and hear about you. 
  • The world needs great leaders. Great leaders are leaders whom people trust. They have confidence in them. They feel safe around them. They respect them. They admire them. They like them, and they are inspired by them.
  • Empathy is letting go of anything that you are selling and anything that you have, and becoming a first-class noticer to where your clients are coming from and what they really need as opposed to you needing them and wanting them to buy what you have.
The secret to closing more sales is to never answer a question on the first meeting. @MarkGoulston on #InnovaBuzz podcast Click To Tweet

The Buzz – Our Innovation Round

Here are Mark’s answers to the questions of our Innovation round. Listen to the interview to get the full scoop.

  1. #1 thing to be more innovative – Be a first class noticer. Look at things with a beginner’s mind.
  2. Best thing for new ideas – Connecting the dots of my lifetime. Don’t prematurely come to a conclusion. Don’t live with confirmation bias. Don’t be afraid of the unknown. Listen to your market with a beginner’s mind.
  3. Favourite tool for innovation – Power questions. You show intelligence by the nature of your questions and not by the nature of your answers. 
  4. Keep project/client on track – Focus on the future that nobody has messed up yet. Ask people how they want you to be with them when things get off track.
  5. Differentiate – Focus on what people are listening for. You are more creative than you think you are. 

To Be a Leader

Connect emotionally with people that you care about. Do the “Bare Your Neck” Challenge

Reach Out

You can reach out and thank Mark through his website and on LinkedIn

Suggested Guest

Mark suggested I interview in Chris Barez-Brown of Upping Your Elvis and Simon Leslie of Ink Global. So Chris and Simon, keep an eye on your inboxes for an invitation from us to the InnovaBuzz podcast, courtesy of Dr Mark Goulston.




Cool things about Mark

  • He’s been described as a “people hacker.”
  • His HBR Ideacast guest episode, Become a Better Listener, has been their #1 ranked podcast intermittently for three years.
  • He’s the founder of #WMYST, a movement focused on making the world happier, one smile at a time.
You show intelligence by the nature of your questions and not by the nature of your answers. @MarkGoulston on #InnovaBuzz podcast Click To Tweet

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Jürgen Strauss

Dr. Jürgen Strauss is The World's Best Human-Centred Podcasting Coach and the only Podcast Innovator with the signature bright yellow headphones, who masterfully crafts human connection for high-impact achievers in a vibrant community. You can find Jürgen on LinkedIn, The InnovaBuzz Podcast, The Flywheel Nation Community as well as on Innovabiz' InstagramTwitter, Facebook pages and his personal Photography website.  

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