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Jimmy Carter Listening

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In leadership studies, listening is theorized as an essential dimension of effective leadership and a way leaders demonstrate respect and appreciation of others (Greenleaf, 1977). Servant leaders listen to those they serve (Greenleaf, 1977). Engleberg and Wynn (1997) emphasize that "good leaders are good listeners . . . [who] do not fake attention, pretend to comprehend, or ignore members. Instead, they work as hard as they can to better understand what members are saying and how those comments affect the group and its goals" (p. 127). Southard and Wolvin conducted a case study in listening and leadership using President Jimmy Carter and his July 15, 1979, Address to the Nation on Energy and National Goals. They argue that in the development and delivery of Carter’s speech, the topic of listening was placed as a focal point “to change the way the president and the American public interfaced.” (Southard and Wolvin, 2009) As quoted in their research, Carter wanted “the American people to be a part of it [the political process].” (Southard and Wolvin, 2009) Carter promised fireside chats, television and call-in radio programs. The Carter administration was portrayed as a listening administration, developing a communication strategy that encouraged listening to public concerns. Southard and Wolvin investigated how this strategy was communicated in the speeches…show more content…
145, 2009) A transformational listening leader would possess charismatic, visionary qualities attributed to transformational leaders while also practicing active listening skills. Southard and Wolvin’s case study of Jimmy Carter demonstrated that “listening is a necessary condition for effective leadership, but it is not a singularly sufficient one.” (p. 150,
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