The Best Way to Persuade is With Your Ears

If you want to persuade others…listen more, talk less

Brian Tubbs


Two people discussing politics in our nation’s capital — image via MidJourney

Whether it’s romance, family, politics, religion, business, or any other arena, the most effective way to persuade someone else is to genuinely, sincerely, and actively listen to the person you wish to persuade.

I’m currently reading 25 Ways to Win with People: How to Make Others Feel Like a Million Bucks by John C. Maxwell and Les Parrott. It’s an excellent book containing some incredible nuggets of wisdom.

When I saw this particular gem of a quote, I had to stop and type out this quick article. The quote is the title of this article.

“The best way to persuade is with your ears.”

— John Maxwell and Les Parrott

One of the main reasons politics has become so toxic in our society (including here on Medium) is that people are more interested these days in expressing themselves than in listening to others.

We want to talk, write, express, pontificate.

We don’t really want to listen.

If we do, it’s just to get some quick info to help feed our pre-existing opinions or to affirm how we already think or feel.

When it comes to people we disagree with…

They’re just stupid.

Or evil.

They’re not worth our time.

Is it any wonder we’re so divided? SMH.

The truth is…

If we want to have a healthier society, we need to listen more and talk less.

And if we want to be more effective in persuading others to our point of view (or at least to properly understand our point of view), we need to listen more and talk less.

That doesn’t mean listening to respond. It doesn’t mean listening grudgingly or half-heartedly.


It means sincerely, actively, and genuinely listening.

Listen more, talk less.

It’s the key to a better society. It’s the key to a more persuasive you.

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