Seven Reasons We Should Train Empathy
Empathy training has become one of the most popular topics in the business world. But what is empathy training, exactly? It’s an ongoing process of building emotional intelligence and learning how to get along with other people, sometimes even from different backgrounds or cultures than you own.
This skillset can be invaluable to your success as an employee, manager, or leader if you can learn to exercise it consistently and work to improve over time. According to the State of Workplace Empathy study, workplace empathy improved in 2021 compared to a year before, with 72% of employees rating their organization and leaders as more empathetic. Here are some reasons why empathy training is crucial to organizational success.
Reasons Why Empathy Training Is Crucial
1. The Business World Isn’t A Fairytale
While empathy training might seem like a frivolous topic, it has real-world implications. The business world isn’t a fairy tale where everyone gets along, and everyone is happy all of the time—there will always be friction between people working together on a team or project. So it’s important that leaders and employees are able to communicate effectively so they can manage conflict without making it worse. That’s why empathy is also considered an organizational superpower for the future of work.
2. Customers And Employees’ Needs Are Changing
In our current business climate, it’s more important than ever to be able to put yourself in other people’s shoes and understand their needs. Customers’ needs are constantly changing, and if you can’t keep up, they’ll go to a competitor. The same goes for employees—if you’re not providing them with what they need, they’ll find a job somewhere else. Empathy training can help you keep up with changes and make sure you’re always meeting these needs.
3. Empathy Makes For Better Teamwork
Good teamwork is the cornerstone of any successful organization, and empathy is a key ingredient of good teamwork. When team members have empathy for one another, they’re better able to understand and respect each other’s perspectives and become more loyal. When you’re working on a team where everyone has different roles and responsibilities, empathy training becomes even more important than usual.
Understanding and respect lead to more effective communication and collaboration. In other words, when team members are empathetic, the whole team benefits. In addition to helping employees learn how their teammates work best, empathy training can also help managers understand how they can help employees grow as individuals while still maintaining high production levels or meeting deadlines.
4. Remote Working Requires New Approaches
In our current climate, with more and more people working remotely, it’s more important than ever to have empathy training in order to be successful. With remote work, there are more opportunities for misunderstandings, conflict, and isolation. That’s why it’s so important to have the skills to understand and relate to others. With empathy training, people can learn how to see both sides of every issue and build relationships with people from all walks of life.
5. Empathy Training Makes For Great Leaders
Leaders who can empathize with people in their organizations will be able to provide better leadership, as they have better insight into what is going on in their teams, including how they are feeling. This also helps leaders provide better direction, as they can more effectively identify needs and help employees. Empathy is crucial for effective leadership because it allows you to connect with others on an emotional level. If you can’t connect with your employees, they’ll likely be less motivated, productive, and engaged in their work. It also helps leaders build trust and credibility. Furthermore, empathy makes leaders more approachable and likable. Lastly, when leaders show empathy, it sets a positive tone for the entire organization.
6. It’s All About Diversity, Inclusivity, And Equity
Organizations that embrace empathy training are those that understand the importance of diversity, inclusivity, and equity. By valuing these principles, they create a more positive and productive work environment for all employees. Additionally, research has shown that organizations with greater diversity are more innovative and successful since it promotes inclusion, innovation, and engagement. Therefore, it’s clear that empathy training is not only beneficial but essential to organizational success.
7. Employees’ Mental Health Is Deteriorating
In today’s workplace, employees are under more pressure than ever before. They’re working longer hours for less pay, and they’re constantly being asked to do more with less. As a result, their mental health is deteriorating. A study conducted by OnePoll found that 62% of American employees worried their bosses would judge them for taking mental health days. But when an employee’s mental health deteriorates, so does their work performance. That’s why empathy training is so important. It can help employees understand and cope with the stressors of the workplace, and it can help organizations create a more supportive environment.
In our fast-paced, constantly connected world, it’s more important than ever to be able to put yourself in someone else’s shoes. That’s where empathy comes in. Empathy is the ability to understand and share the feelings of another person. And while it might seem like something that should come naturally, studies have shown that empathy can be learned and practiced. That’s why, in order to be successful, organizations need to prioritize empathy training for their employees.