Leaders are often choose to influence others through oral or written communication. While speaking is an important attribute of good leadership, listening actually offers a greater opportunity to influence the thinking and actions of others.  Speech communicates what the leader is thinking and wants. Listening enables the leader to understand what others are thinking and want. As I like to tell my clients "you move people from where they're at, not from where you're at". To influence, a leader must first know the motivations, fears, and wants of those he/she is trying to influence.  Additionally, the act of " listening attentively" demonstrates respect for the speaker and creates a connection that begins the journey to trust. However, if a leader is not able or doesn't want to listen in a manner that communicates that he/she cares about what is being said, it is better not to engage with the other person. False listening is a trust buster. My advice to leaders is to choose the times you want to engage in authentic conversations and then listen to be influenced. You will find yourself having great influence.