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Seeking to understand before being understood

In the spirit of helping you deal with people issues in your team, we’d like to share with you this excerpt from Dr Steven Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective People book:


“If I were to summarize in one sentence the single most important principle I have learned in the field of interpersonal relations, it would be this: Seek first to understand, then to be understood.”


When faced with an issue with another person in your team, it’s always good to first seek the facts. When you know all the facts, you’ll be in a better position to decide what to do. You’ll be in a better frame of reference to respond with empathy or/and assertiveness and laying down your boundaries.

Every firm owner in the world will face these types of people issues, but always remember that your teams are your greatest challenge but also your greatest asset. Leading people can be difficult, but the key is to master the leader in ourselves.


Always lead with empathy and kindness. Failing to see the full humanity of someone would obviously get in the way of understanding them.


In order to really seek to understand, you cannot have already judged a person or situation. You need to develop a desire to understand — a desire to see things from others’ point of view, to see their reasons, and feel what they feel.


Before jumping on a decision and concluding your judgement on someone, have you asked their opinion and been open to really really listening to hear and understand, not just listening to respond or talk?


P.S. Whenever you’re ready… here are 4 ways we can help you grow your Accounting or Bookkeeping business:

1. Grab a free copy of our book – The Accountants 20-Hour Workweek

It’s the blueprint to structure, staff, and scale your firm whilst dramatically reducing your work hours. — Click Here

2. Join the Wize WaterCooler and connect with other Accountants who are scaling too

It’s our new Facebook community where business-minded Accountants and Bookkeepers learn to build a firm that runs without them. — Click Here

3. Reduce your workload by 20% in 30 days for $67

We’ve just released a new online platform giving you access to a step-by-step plan to reduce your workload and free up an extra day a week.  Get access for $67 and become our next case study. – Click here

4. Work with the Wize Guys privately

If you’d like to work directly with the Wize Mentor team to take you from stuck to scale… just send us a message at tell us a little about your firm and what you’d like help with, and we’ll get you all the details!