Empathy, the ability to be increasingly sought after by managers

Empathy, the ability to be increasingly sought after by managers

Remorse. We often think that this ability is mainly recognized and appreciated in the personal field. But in the professional world, it is becoming more and more desirable among managers whether they are the bosses or the managers of a team with small employees.

In early November, American Magazine Forbes The headline read: “Empathy is the most important leadership skill according to research”. Using the results of a recent study conducted in the United States, he pointed out that, among other things, 61% of employees say they like innovation, 76% are committed when they have empathetic leaders, 13% and 32% if not, respectively.

Although the empathetic manager has long been considered a bad manager, until recently this subject had no place in university management programs and other business schools. This vital skill of social intelligence – misunderstood sympathy – is to put oneself in the shoes of another, to understand or recognize the emotions of others and to know how to react appropriately, so a central management value has become.

Infection as an accelerator

So, of course, there was the epidemic. Uncertainty, compulsory teleworking imposed overnight, increased exposure to stress… Companies needed more than ever to support their employees. “We had to take the initiative to support staff and communicate more frequently with groups. Covid has also shown that it is impossible to pretend that there is a barrier between career and personal life,” said Alexia Michaekes, a business consultant at the Reliance Institute Europe, which he co-founded and supports several leaders in Switzerland.

But this trend, which is part of an environment where social and social change has abounded over the past decades, and neurological advances have demonstrated the many benefits of emotional intelligence, which is already underway. The historical personality of the chef who presses and leads his teams with an iron hand is increasingly questioned.

Managers have realized that most stressful situations arise from bad communication because the message is badly reported or because communication is not stressed. To get effective and constructive collaboration, it is good to make sure that the different perspectives of the collaborators are understood. Showing empathy is a human value, but it is also a guarantee of greater personal and collective performance. In times of crisis, as in ordinary times.

“Psychological care is the secret of creative and talented groups,” it was recently explained to the French daily. Echoes Amy Edmundson is Professor and Head of Management at Harvard Business School. According to this influential human resource expert who has been working on the subject for many years, to create this psychological security, to create an atmosphere of trust and honesty, everyone dares to express themselves and propose ideas, with no choice but to show leaders ’compassion.

In an environment marked by a shortage of manpower and problems in retaining skills, there is no doubt that such a management style will be a priority for mentoring management.

New generations, new expectations

“Young people are becoming more and more aware of the importance of understanding in this complex world,” notes Alexia Michaels. The amount of resilience. At the heart of the whole human leadership Editions at the end of November were released by Favre.

So empathy, the vehicle for greater performance, seems to be the argument for attracting talent and keeping them there. But be careful not to overdo it: “By being overly involved in their team’s experience, managers run the risk of turning this skill into an emotional tragedy. Some leaders may even use it for maneuvering purposes. So it requires rationality and a real and positive mindset, ”the expert assesses.

Empathy, if it was a sought-after talent, we would have known that it is not yet apparent to everyone. In early December, the boss of an American company, the Zoom video conferencing site, laid off 900 of its employees, or almost 15% of its employees, shocking the world. “If you are part of this call, you are one of the unlucky ones who will be turned into idiots. Your contract comes into effect immediately, ”said Vishal Cork, owner of Better.com, a real estate loan broker. A few days later, he realized the cruelty of his methods and apologized.

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