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The “trap” of compassionate leadership.

February 22, 2022 - Be in the Know

Compassionate leadership is something we hear a lot about these days, but how we actually do this can seem a little fuzzy. How can leaders strike a balance between leading with compassion and their company’s performance? How can you contribute to the individual well-being of employees while keeping company results on track?

When we talk about “compassionate leadership”, the word “leadership” always has to stay top of mind. Performance can never go off the radar, even if compassion is a major leveraging tool for keeping your troops productive. Compassion should never become a “guilt” zone for managers. Because when that happens, they’ll have the impression they are walking on eggshells, which can lead to employee disengagement. So, how do we move beyond simple “compassionate leadership”?

Focus on talents

A manager has to show compassion without losing sight of the professional framework. By promoting an environment that encourages employees to develop their talents and by listening to them, you can create a climate of “professional compassion”. By doing this, you will no longer need to respond to periodic problems, but will be able to offer stability and predictability in your management style.

Instead of working only on the blind spots of your team, focus instead on their strengths: learn how to answer their needs without losing sight of your business objectives. Focus on your talents, and invest in employee development beforehand instead of later.

Measure your efforts through performance

You already know how to measure your company’s performance. Now, how about connecting this data to other factors related to employee wellness. Is there a cause and effect relationship between managing with compassion and how you perform?

To do this, be sure to ask your teams the right questions during regular follow-ups. Keep an eye on your employee turnover and absenteeism and the reasons for them. Why not conduct a survey on employee happiness? Which members of your team will still be working for you in 5 to 10 years?

Has somebody left the team? Have you thought about conducting exit interviews to find out what motivated them to make this decision?

The key takeaway? The wellbeing of your team members and your company are interrelated

The era of competitiveness to stimulate team productivity is a thing of the past. The personal well-being of your team members is a major leveraging tool and leading with compassion will help you ensure everyone benefits from it. By maintaining this balance, you will find yourself with a healthier team working for a healthier company.

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