Empathy is generally defined as “the ability to sense other people’s emotions, coupled with the ability to imagine what someone else might be thinking or feeling.” Today, as the workplace continues to evolve, empathy is often expected in the workforce, with the added expectation that this change comes from the top. But according to the “2019 State of the Workplace Empathy Study,” reported on by HR Dive, “92% of CEOs believe their organization is empathetic, while only 72% of workers agree.”
Researchers note that empathy is an inherently human response, and we see it all the time. So if, as human beings, we are innately empathetic, why does empathy remain such a rare commodity in the workplace? And as business leaders, how do we toe the line of empathy without invading the personal space of others?