A study of the effects of active listening on listening attitudes of middle managers

J Occup Health. 2004 Jan;46(1):60-7. doi: 10.1539/joh.46.60.


The present study was conducted to clarify the direct effects of active listening (AL) training given to middle managers in a local government. Altogether, 345 middle managers participated in 13 AL training sessions over two years. We developed the Inventive Experiential Learning (IEL) method, and used it as the central training method in this study. To investigate how well the participants learned AL, we asked the middle managers to answer a shorter version of the Active Listening Attitude Scale (ALAS) consisting of two subscales-i.e. "Listening Attitude" and "Listening Skill"-before training, one month after and three months after training. Altogether, 284 middle managers answered the questionnaire three times. The scores of each subscale were analyzed by repeated measurement analysis of variance. The participants were divided into three groups using the percentile values of the original sample of ALAS, i.e. low-score group (-24%), medium-score group (25-75%) and high-score group (76%-), and the proportionate changes were examined. The results showed both the "Listening Attitude" and "Listening Skill" subscales increased significantly after training. Analysis of the percentiles showed that the proportion of the low-score group decreased and that of the high-score group increased in both subscales, from one to three months after training. These changes are considered to indicate that the participants have learned AL although they attended AL training for only one day.

MeSH terms

  • Analysis of Variance
  • Attention / classification
  • Attitude*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Japan
  • Local Government
  • Male
  • Mental Health Services / organization & administration*
  • Middle Aged
  • Occupational Health Services / methods*
  • Outcome Assessment, Health Care
  • Program Evaluation
  • Staff Development / methods*