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Workplace Empathy is the Rodney Dangerfield of Communication

Growing up one of my favorite comedians was Rodney Dangerfield.

He built a lucrative career proclaiming that he “never got any respect.”

His standup routines were a series of one liners lamenting his lot in life, such as,
“I don’t get any respect, last week I called the suicide prevention hotline and they tried to talk me into it.”

In leadership I find the concept of communicating with empathy to be the same.

Leaders are confused by it.

Many believe it’s too soft to communicate with empathy. Others believe they know how to communicate with empathy and struggle to get the results so they think it doesn’t work.

The former believe their people will see them as weak and will walk all over them, disrespecting their position. The latter are doing it incorrectly.

I’ll address the former first, and save the latter for next week so you get this series in bite size chunks.

When leaders communicate with the right doses of empathy it offers many benefits, including:

  1. allows people to open up as to the challenges they are facing
  2. people feel comfortable opening sharing those challenges without the fear of feeling inadequate
  3. it builds a connection between the leader and his/her people that allows both sides to care about each other personally and professionally
  4. it allows the leader to be direct and firm when they need to be because their people trust them, and know they are being told things that are in their best interest and its not just for the leaders own interest.

For all those reasons and more, leaders should give “empathy” more respect.

There are 2 specific contexts leaders should apply empathy in their environment, you’ll learn about those next week, too.

All of March’s FREE Strategy Sessions have been scheduled, look for April’s to be released in a couple of weeks.

In the meantime, you can learn about one of the contexts of workplace empathy in my newest white paper report:

“How to Transform Your Workplace from Drama & Defensiveness to Employee Initiative & Ownership”

Download your free copy at this link:

Make it a great week!

Best Regards,

P.S. – I’m really excited because next week I’ll be presenting my first seminar on the topic of “How to Transform Your Workplace from Drama & Defensiveness to Employee Initiative & Ownership” to a sold out audience at the Rochester (NY) Business Alliance. So the webinar is not far behind, grab the report today at

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