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Empathy – just a buzzword? I don’t think so

Empathy – just a buzzword? I don’t think so

I’ve recently listened to a podcast with the title “It’s cool to be kind: The value of empathy at work” and I couldn’t help but think of our simple “meteo” session during our weekly meetings at Maluti Communications. Gathered around the table, here, each team member shares their current emotional and mental state about how they feel towards themselves, others, and work, setting the tone for the week ahead. One’s state of mind could be described as either sunny, cloudy, or stormy.

During our last “meteo” session, my state of mind was “stormy” due to a work event that was rushed and did not meet our usual standard of management. This feedback led us to reallocate tasks in a way that acknowledged everyone’s workload and personal pressures but also led to a fair distribution of tasks within the team. This adjustment not only ensured several projects’ timely completion but also maintained our team’s morale and well-being by setting a more balanced work structure.

This simple yet profound practice not only sets the tone for our week but also embodies the essence of empathy in creating a supportive and productive workplace, mirroring the insights shared in the podcast.

Empathy, as highlighted in this podcast, isn’t about coddling or being overly lenient; it’s about truly understanding and connecting with colleagues on a human level. This connection enables us to navigate the complexities of work with greater care, insight, and effectiveness.

At Maluti Communications, empathy has been a cornerstone for over two decades, guiding our leadership and influencing our approach with clients and partners alike. It’s a testament to the belief that understanding and performance are not mutually exclusive but are, in fact, complementary. Through empathy, we’ve built a resilient, dynamic, and highly effective team that values accountability and excellence as much as compassion and understanding.

This blend of empathy and excellence is, I believe, what sets our team apart. We challenge the misconception that empathy equates to softness, showcasing instead its role as a powerful tool for building a strong, cohesive, and high-performing team.

This practice has also become integral to how we work, naturally extending into our interactions with clients and their teams. By prioritizing empathetic engagement, we cultivate environments rich in open communication and mutual respect. Our approach, demonstrating empathy as a key leadership skill, has proven instrumental in enhancing team dynamics and driving organizational success. This commitment makes our partnerships more than just business dealings, ensuring they are founded on common values and goals.

Continuing to embed empathy into our work’s fabric serves as a constant reminder of its impact on every interaction, project, and success. It underscores that our commitment to empathy extends beyond business—it’s about fostering a more compassionate, understanding world, one conversation at a time.