Many of the problems plaguing business today can be traced back to poor decision-making by the men and women in charge. This has had a terrible impact on our nation’s economy, our general productivity, and the personal finances of millions of Americans. The only way to avoid making poor decisions in the future—or at the very least attempt to make better ones—is to improve a skill that many in business lack, says consultant Bernie Ferrari. They must become better listeners.

POWER LISTENING: Mastering the Most Critical Business Skill of All argues that listening is the most important skill that one can learn in business. As Jeffrey Immelt, Chairman and CEO of General Electric, writes in the book’s foreword, “listening may be the single most undervalued and undeveloped business skill, especially in an age of increasing uncertainty and fast-paced change.”

Becoming a good listener can be the difference between success and failure, yet few managers know where to begin or what steps to take. POWER LISTENING offers the unique view that listening is a skill that can be learned, practiced, and applied by anyone. Listening is not about making your colleagues feel good, but about problem solving and good decisions. Without the right information or the best ideas, managers inevitably make bad calls, with often disastrous result to them and their businesses.

Through real-world examples and take-aways that the reader can begin using immediately, POWER LISTENING shows how listening works and why it can be so powerful. Readers will learn how to identify bad listening habits, the folly of assumptions, and why it is crucial to stop talking in order to become a better listener. Then the book lays out a framework for sorting the information one gathers through listening into “mental filing drawers.” And finally, the book connects listening back to its ultimate purpose: improving business performance through better decision-making. The information gathered through listening can be drawn out and recombined in creative new ways to develop solutions to difficult problems.

POWER LISTENING is a fresh idea in business, and a must-read for anyone who manages others.