Be a fish out of the water as study finds workplaces still lack empathy

Customer or employees care conceptSoft skills are classed as the most needed in skill in today’s economy, yet, these are the skills that are the hardest to find.  Empathetic management, good communication, respectfulness to employees and from colleague to colleague is one of the top skills a manager and culture of an organisation can have and promote.

Empathy is something that people think they understand and practice but studies show that the knowledge, understanding and skills gap is significant Demonstrating empathy however is crucial for business health – Businessolver finds that. ‘ empathy can foster retention and drive productivity: 77 percent of employees say they’d work longer hours for an empathetic employer, and 60 percent say they would take a lower salary from an empathetic employer.’

“Empathy is essential to leading and managing others, but to reap its full benefits, leaders must understand what it is, how it functions, and how to effectively bring it to the workplace,” said Dr. Adam Waytz, professor of management and organizations at the Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management. “Workplace empathy means understanding employees’ feelings and needs to drive a more engaged workforce and a better workplace experience. We can only close the gap and achieve greater workplace empathy if organizations commit to an empathy evolution.”

Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg it by extending her company’s bereavement leave after experiencing a sudden personal loss of her own. This was something that Sheryl Sandburg used personal experience to enhance the caring and empathic nature of the company.  Paying attention to the emotional needs of staff is a crucial part of empathy but is not always easy. Sheryl Sandberg had experienced something that she used to promote a more empathic culture. However you do not need to have experiened the same thing as another to tap into your empathy. But you do need to engage emoationally. That is the basis behind tha approach to developing empathy that C&C Empathy Training deliversm and with outstanding results.

CarolynThe Director Carolyn Cleveland has walked the walk with discovering empathy and has seen the best and worst examples of it when her child died as well as already having studied it academically in counselling training. She skillfully takes individuals and groups on a journey of empathy, so that the skills learnt are embedded in their experience of the training and can therefore continue to develop.

As Carolyn states, “even as ‘the expert’ on empathy, I am learning, developing and making mistakes all the time, even in my own business and personal life. Empathy is images (4)intrinsically connected to self awareness and emotional development. We are human beings and not perfect. Organisations and individuals should be looking to cultivate an empathic culture, rather than quick fixes. It is not always a comfortable route to take, but statistics show over and over again, the sooner organisations embrace a culture of empathy, the more loyal, happier and creative the staff, the better the retention and the better productivity. Sometimes you need to be a fish out of water to fly.” 

Although falling short, but with the UK Prime Minister stating in her Manifesto that parents suffering the loss of a child should have statutory time off, businesses in the UK are having clear directives from government over empathic workplaces. The time for upskilling leaders, managers and workforces is now being seen as a very valuable investment of time and money.

Relevant training:

A Journey in Leadership Using Empathy

using empathy in leadership

Key Learning Outcomes:

Who are we? Understanding & developing the human connection

How to identify and understand emotionally focused thinking and practice and staff focused leadership

How lack of empathy in one-on-one encounters has the potential to cause psychological harm, how to respond to others using empathy

How to cultivate empathy and inclusive leadership- communicate at a deeper level

How to use your new skills to enhance the human connection and handle difficult conversations

How to manage empathy to prevent burn out and improve retention

Understand reflexive leadership and how to use these skills for staff well- being and productivity

 

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