Understanding Empathy in Leadership

16 June, 2021
leader must have empathy

Understanding Empathy in Leadership

A developed sense of empathy is a powerful force that helps maintain relationships between people. Emotional empathy allows a person to understand others. Compassion is the primary condition for closeness and trust that is essential for a Christian leader and mentor.

The connection between leadership and empathy

Empathy is an incredible value and essential leadership skill. Sometimes leaders need to feel people and understand everything which happens around them, the things that influence their life.

Empathy often promotes altruistic behavior. Remember that empathy at work will definitely help you better understand people and interact with them.

Developing empathy as a leadership skill builds bonds of trust. It gives you an idea of ​​how others are feeling and thinking. At its core, manifesting a sense of empathy helps make decisions, sharpening the perception and intuition.

How to show leadership empathy

1. Empathetic leaders listen sincerely

An effective leader is a good listener: he listens with open ears, open eyes, and an open heart. This means he needs to pay attention to body language, the tone of voice, hidden emotions, and focus on what the other person is saying. If you want to help people, have fellowship with the Holy Spirit. He is the best friend and the comforter on earth.

“When the Comforter comes, whom I will send to you from the Father - the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father - He will testify about Me.” (Gospel of John 15:26)

2. Do not interrupt

An interested and non-empathic leader often becomes impatient and interrupts the other person. In this way he deprives the other person of the opportunity to open up and express his feelings. Give this person time and let him trust you enough.

3. Immerse yourself in the conversation

When an empathetic leader is talking to someone, you will never see him looking at his watch, looking through the details of the room, or checking his phone. It's simple: when a person speaks, listen. If he expresses his feelings to you, be there. Focus on putting yourself in his shoes and think about how you can support him.

4. Do not judge

Even when they feel the exact opposite, empathetic leaders are not judgmental. They let go of their prejudice and allow themselves to open up and see new perspectives. The correct manifestation of empathy is a complete perception of someone else's worldview as your own, and the opportunity to better understand what a person is experiencing at this moment.

5. Watch your body language

Empathetic leaders understand that non-verbal communication can say more than words. Body language is often the most direct way of communicating what a person is feeling. When you interact with others, pay attention to your body language: stay open, use hand gestures and keep calm.

6. Show personal interest

Empathetic leaders are genuinely interested in the lives of those around them. Show interest, ask questions about people's lives, their problems, their families, successes and endeavors. This is the effective way to build trust in a relationship. 

It is important for a leader to show a sense of empathy to others. Looking at the leader, a person learns to imitate and follow his example. With an empathetic leader, everyone knows they can talk openly about what they think and feel without being judged, rejected, or ignored.

Showing empathy is your thinking muscles that you can strengthen. This is not your weakness, but your strength.

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