Last month we introduced our ABC’s of Leadership for all times to reflect leadership challenges in response to the current climate. This week’s podcast continues the series as we move into the fifth necessary skills for today’s leaders: Empathy and inclusive leadership. I will speak with trusted WLH Team Member, Loretta Cate about this area that we are both deeply passionate about.
Leadership empathy is the ability to build understanding around others’ thoughts, feelings, and rationale through inclusion. Practicing empathy enables leaders to seek perspectives, ideas, and solutions by encouraging involvement in thinking through a situation. Empathy is the necessary ingredient for building deeper understanding between leaders and their team members, which allows for more effective coaching through transition, coaching to higher performance, and coaching for career advancement that creates a diverse pool of candidates. This is the key to ensuring that team members feel respected, valued, and trusted — all qualities that are paramount to pivotal relationships in both business and personal life.
Empathy is particularly important in the area of transition coaching, which is all about understanding what people are thinking and feeling about a given change and the challenges and perspectives that surround it. Empathetic leadership doesn’t mean agreeing with these perspectives, but rather understanding concerns and communicating in such a way that these concerns are both acknowledged and considered in the broader scope of company movements. It is also key to career coaching, as it elevates the visibility of transparent and fair advancement criteria, creating a level playing field for all. Given the unique and growing challenges of today, empathy is an increasingly important quality for leaders to have and exhibit in all business relationships.
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