Empathy is at the heart of good teamwork and collaboration in the office. This makes empathy one of the most fundamentally human abilities in today’s business world.
The positive office environment is even the fundamental idea of the BVOP teachings related to People management. BVOP suggests Human resources managers develop people-oriented culture inside the organizations.
There are many examples of modern business and professional development supported by the company culture.
While research after study shows that levels of work stress and workload increase with each passing year, the role of empathy in the work environment is becoming more and more critical.
We all need a great deal of empathy in the workplace, and not just from our executives. Every employee must show compassion and understanding.
The good news is that our brains are “programmed” in such a way that our compassion comes naturally.
However, Jamil Zacky, author of The War for Kindness, claims that while we make a concerted effort to empathize with all situations in our daily lives, we can become even better colleagues and friends. Here are some phrases you should use more often in your work if you want to achieve this result:
1. “How are you feeling?”
Very often, the best thing you can do to encourage empathy in the workplace is to ask someone in your environment how they feel. When you invite others to express their emotions and talk about things that torment them or make them feel happy, you show them that they are valued and respected and that their well-being is important to others.
If a colleague of your sales team has lost a valuable customer, you can go to him and tell him, “I heard what happened. How do you feel?”. This will probably not solve the problems arising from this situation, but it will allow your colleague to relieve the stress and stress he or she has accumulated.
In many cases, we are afraid to ask such questions, thinking that they may be perceived as invading one’s personal space, but the truth is that one can easily understand whether one wants to talk about one’s problems. If he gives you a short answer without going into detail, then it might be better not to keep asking him questions like that. In most cases, however, people appreciate their interest in them.
“I’m sorry you were in that situation”
This phrase can be handy at a time when your colleague is sharing with you information about an unpleasant situation or incident. Imagine your colleague has just learned that his department will have massive layoffs in the next week or has shared with you that there are family issues. Sometimes the most elemental reaction shows the most empathy. You may follow the phrase with additional questions to help clarify the situation your colleague is in. This way, you can even come up with a solution to help solve the problem.
3. “I would feel the same way”
This phrase helps to build and strengthen relationships with others. Suppose your colleague told you that he did not receive the long-awaited promotion because his manager was biased against him from the start and showed no interest in his candidacy for the post. Instead, the promotion was given to an employee who is friendly with the manager. As expected, your colleague is feeling cheated and frustrated. When you say “I would feel the same way,” you are telling him that his reaction is entirely normal and that you are sharing his dissatisfaction with this injustice.
4. “What can I help?”
This expression is also extremely useful in improving your relationship with others, whether it is your colleague or boss. A 2018 LinkedIn survey found that 60% of people who are stressed before the start of a workweek say this is due to the many jobs they have. This is a good reason to show sympathy and offer help. People very often need the most comfort and reassurance. The fact that you are ready to help does not necessarily mean that others will take advantage of your proposal, nor that you have to take full responsibility for any other obligation. However, if you make a specific promise, you must fulfill it.
5. “Great job!”
Empathy can also be expressed at a time when a colleague of yours has achieved some great success. If a person in your team has done a great job on a task or has attracted a new client for the company, do not miss the opportunity to praise it. It is important to realize that the success of the company depends on the efforts and hard work of all its employees. Whether it is your boss or a subordinate, be generous with compliments.