So we all know that to be a good musician you need to be able to listen. The better directors can hear both the composite sound and the detail of what their ensembles produce, the more power they have to improve it. And the individual musicians within the ensemble need to be able to listen and respond to each other to achieve such desiderata as tuning, blend, balance, synchronisation - indeed, all the forms of interpersonal coordination we refer to collectively, if tautologically, as ‘ensemble’.
People care about the art of listening in other walks of life, too. Self-help books that promise to help your interpersonal skills tell you to pay attention to what other people say in conversation, not just spend the time you’re not talking planning what you’re going to say next.
And in specialist circumstances such as counselling and psychotherapy, it is central: not only does the therapist need to listen acutely to reach a diagnosis, the patient needs to feel listened to.