Empathy Is The Best Policy

Empathy Is The Best Policy

Empathy is a really powerful word. It sums up many other terms such as compassion, understanding, and care for one another. But what does it mean to have empathy as professionals in times like these. Times where there is a lack of physical face to face contact and the only few moments we see our co-workers are through a screen in a separate location altogether.

It is no doubt an effective tool to have in the workplace, no matter if it’s together in the office or while working remotely. A company with a good culture of empathy does not only exudes great morale and camaraderie amongst its workers. It ultimately creates happier and more productive teams in the long run. And a strong team can tackle many challenges imposed by the restrictions and changes faced in the new normal.

It all begins with taking a step back and trying to understand the ideas and thoughts coming from teammates and using the right tone of communication when replying or even rebutting when having meetings and discussions. Actively listening and catching on to body language is also vital because working remotely needs a different approach when reading into someone’s gestures during communication as opposed to sitting together in a meeting room.

Well, it might come off as straightforward and takes only a few simple actions to start implementing, doesn’t it? Before you do, here are 3 pointers on how you can implement empathy in your life as well as your organization and those around you.  

Self-Care and You  

Before trying to reach out to our co-workers better and have an empathetic approach, we must first acknowledge that empathy comes from within. We need to understand our feelings first before we can get to know the feelings of others. By doing so, we can gauge how others might feel based on our capabilities and the task at hand.

By doing so, it gives us the ability to access situations at a more personal level with a greater understanding of what others might go through. A pivotal point of view is essential, and only then can we start to be empathetic towards those around us.  

Speak Less, Listen More  

To hear others talk and to listen to their concerns are two very different actions. To hear others is to get the information needed to carry out our duties. To listen is to understand and comprehend what others might feel or think. Hold back on the talking and see what our co-workers have to say, keeping empathy in mind.

Look out for small little details of behavioural changes that might occur when they speak. If need be, approach them after the meeting or conference call to see how they are holding up and if their well-being is affected in any way.  

Questions Through Communication  

Questions asked through an email or via text lacks a distinct human-like tone of voice. It might derive to the point where it may come off as rude or demanding, even though that was not our intention. Thus, it is crucial to structure our questions appropriately and get the point across in a softer and more “polite” tone.

Asking questions is also a great way to communicate with one another. A simple question to ask if they need any help or assistance is much appreciated when our co-workers might be overloaded with the task they might struggle to complete. Remember, communication is vital when it comes to understanding each other, and that is the core of empathy.

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