To understand empathy and how it applies to the workplace, you must first know what it means. Webster’s dictionary defines the term as a feeling that gives way to understanding and sharing another person’s experiences and emotions.
In simpler terms, empathy is the ability to step into someone else’s shoes, be aware of their feelings and understand their needs.
In the workplace, empathy can mean a show a respect for co-workers. An empathetic leadership style can make everyone feel like a team and increase productivity, morale and loyalty. Empathy is a powerful tool in the leadership belt of a well-liked and respected manager.
People’s perception of whether they are respected, regarded and valued by others, or not, depends on one’s background, experiences, values and beliefs. This is where co-workers or managers’ empathy is crucial to be able to deliver those feelings and use the proper words and expressions and how they are delivered.
Here are some tips to apply empathy in the workplace.
Bottom line is that empathy takes work. When we understand each other, we have a better idea of the challenges ahead of us. It encourages others to understand the root cause behind poor performance. Being empathetic allows us to help struggling co-workers to improve and excel on the job, and that is what it’s all about.