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why compassion works better than harshness in office


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More smiling, less worrying. More compassion, less judgment. More blessed, less stressed. More love, less hate.- Roy T. Bennett 

Being compassionate and showing empathy in the workplace does not mean you are a weak leader or supervisor or manager. It simply means you are an evolved human being. Are you an evolved human being who is able to rise beyond the moment, the provocation, and try to be compassionate and at the same time, a good leader?

When a junior at office commits a mistake of any nature or magnitude, the 'normal reaction' of any supervisor would be to scream, shout, admonish or castigate him/her in public or private, ensuring that the mistake does not happen again and the frustration & anger of the supervisor is vented. This has been the norm since time immemorial. But is it correct?  Is there any other approach that can be used by the supervisor? 

By being the "typical boss", one might be demonstrating the position of power/authority and reprimanding the junior for the issue of any magnitude, but it is also having a negative fallout for the company.  Expressions of such negativity erode loyalty & trust of an employee to his / her immediate boss and eventually the brand itself, leading to high attrition levels especially as noticed in call centers and BPOs. 

Second, Harshness leads to a fall in creative ability and motivation due to the environment of negativity. This as we all know as a direct bearing on the productivity of the company which translates into revenues.  An employee stops taking risks, initiative, or experimentation. The culture of "playing it safe" takes over the culture of "pro activeness" which is required in every company for it to grow. 

To overcome these scenarios, try compassion as an alternative and in this blog, we look at some way for people in positions of authority to do so. 

1. Control your emotions. This piece of advice is for all of us, in all adverse and emotionally charged or negative situations. Take a step back, breathe deeply for a few minutes or take time out to process your emotions, thoughts before you say or do anything which is negative and detrimental to the brand and yourself personally (whether mentally or physically). Practice meditation techniques to get a grip on your emotional quotient/outbursts. It works, try it. It's best not to react, take time to cool off. 

2. Empathy means putting yourself in someone else's shoes. It's different from sympathy, hence not to confuse these two sentiments. It is widely acknowledged that seeing a situation from various perspectives gives an insight into other aspects that we would not be exposed to or aware of if we didn't empathize or "walk in the shoes of the employee". 

3. Forgive people for their mistakes and have a big heart. It works best for the brand, the supervisor, the employee concerned, and the ambiance of the work. The thought and action of forgiveness have many repercussions such as minimizing stress, lowering of blood pressure & heart issues as well as negative issues. 

About the Author

Anand Sharma

Anand is a Salesforce Evangelist, joined the Salesforce ecosystem in 2014 helping customers to be successful with Salesforce, and joined Codleo to share the goodness with even more developers all around the world. He is based in New Delhi, with his wife, and he tries to escape summers every chance he gets.

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