When it comes to leadership, we are all in this together, and a little empathy is all we need.
Unlike animals, human beings inhabit a society and share things. Empathy is crucial to every human being, but more to leaders.
When I say leaders, I am referring to you and me. We are all leaders in our various works and positions in life.
Contrary to popular belief, empathy in leadership isn’t a weakness.
It’s very prevalent to see leaders fail in everyday self-management — and use power in a way that is motivated by narcissism and selfish interest. The most common leadership failures aren’t just corruption, sex scandals, or even embezzlement of funds. Many leaders have lost sight of what it means to be powerful and yet empathetic at the same time.
How does it happen? You ask.
- Slowly, and then suddenly. It happens with the following;
. Bad mini-choices that are made unconsciously. This shows subtly as throwing one’s weight around when allowed to lead.
. Demand special treatment over everything because you have been called to lead.
. Isolated decision-making; and getting one’s way all the time.
. Defending one’s ego and pride over everything, including things that don’t matter.
It’s prevalent to hear people say, “Do you know who I am? Especially when you poke their ego, and they reach a choke point.
Empathy plays an essential role in leadership. Applying heart as you lead helps you understand that you don’t have to use power for your benefit.
As a leader, when you show your subordinates that you share their feelings in good times and troubled times, it strengthens the bond of your relationship.
Empathetic leaders are committed to serving the general public and are generous with the time they spend as role models for younger generations. Empathy is not hard to achieve in leadership. It only requires one to relate to other people’s feelings.
Leadership isn’t solely about strength and exhibition of power. You must be willing to risk vulnerability and convenience at some point.
It’s okay to be human while being a leader. The strongest people make time to help other people even if they struggle with their problems.
We all desire to make a difference in our world, earn trust, have non-negotiable standards, be competent and take charge. However, empathy, authenticity, and generosity distinguish competence and greatness.
Trust me; nothing will blow up so much as a failure in walking the talk or the selfish abuse of power. Leaders aren’t born; they are made.
Are you a leader?