Mr. Rakib is a great HR professional, but his "people" skills hold him back. I can't see how
he'll ever be promoted unless he does something about it.
Many of us know people who have reached a certain point in their careers because of
excellent technical abilities – but they somehow don't get along with team members,
because they're less accomplished in their people skills.
This might be due to the insensitive manner in which they ask co-workers for things, the
way they never seem to listen to what others say, or their intolerance for other methods of
Do you have colleagues like Mr. Rakib?
Perhaps you are a bit like Mr. Rakib, yourself?
Lets face an empathy test!
• Apathy, Sympathy, Empathy
• Defining empathy
• Superiority Complex
• Emotional Intelligence
• Empathy and Performance
• Types of Empathy
• Guidelines for being Empathic
• Listening guidelines
Apathy, Sympathy, Empathy
"Path" means "feeling"
"A" means "not" or "no"
"Sym" means "together"
"Em" means "in"
To feel apathetic is to have no feeling on a matter.
To feel sympathetic is to feel together with someone about something. For instance, you
can sympathize with a person who sustained a loss that you never yourself experienced.
To feel empathetic is to have an emotional investment in another's experience and feelings. For
instance, distinct from the example of sympathy above, you can empathize with a person who
sustained a loss only when you yourself sustained a similar or identical loss.
Apathy, Sympathy, Empathy in example
A person is drowning!
Apathy is, “This is not my concern!”
Sympathy is, “Oh my God! you are drowning, I feel so
sad for you.”
Empathy is, “Oh my God! you are drowning, let’s see
how can I help you.”
“The ability to understand what others are feeling” (Duan, 2000; Duan & Hill, 1996;
“The ability to actively share emotions with others, and passively experiencing the
feelings of others” (Kellett, Humphrey, & Sleeth, 2006).
Empathy is the Cornerstone of Emotional Intelligence. (Schmitz, 2016)
William et al, 2007
Emotional Intelligence (EI)
The term created by Peter Salavoy and John Mayer, and popularized by Dan
Goleman in his 1996 book of the same name.
In practie, it is being aware that emotions can drive our behavior and impact
people (positively or negatively), and learning how to manage those emotions (self
and/or others) especially, when we are under pressure.
“… Yet as we reinvent the way we do business, the real game-changer may prove to
be neither algorithms nor artificial intelligence, but rather human intelligence. …” –
The Soft Skills Imperative (2017).
Emotional Intelligence (EI)
Central Abilities of EI:
Identifying emotions Evaluating how others feel
Controlling one's own emotions Perceiving how others feel
Relating to others In facilitating social communication
Competencies of EI:
Self-Awareness : Conscious knowledge of one's own character, feelings,
motives, and desires.
Self-management : Being consistent, accountable, stick to the plan, educate
& center yourself.
Social-awareness : Empathy, Listening Skills.
Relationship management : Balancing in give and take, Adeptness.
Lack of Emotional Intelligence
Lack of Emotional Intelligence may cause Inferiority Complex from:
• Negative Emotion
• Negative Perception
• Behavioral Issues
• Poor Communication
• Reduced Proactivity
• Low Performance
And, hidden inferiority complex leads to Superiority Complex.
Inferiority and Superiority Complex
First appeared in Sigmund Freud and his colleague Carl Jung, Alfred Adler (founder of classic
“An inferiority complex is a lack of self-worth, a doubt and uncertainty about oneself, and feelings
of not measuring up to standards” (Steffen, Ronny and Von, 2006).
In 1999, two researchers, Dunning and Kruger, identified a cognitive bias wherein relatively
unskilled individuals suffer from illusory superiority, mistakenly assessing their ability to be much
higher than is accurate.
Route causes : Raised on praise and taught to be extremely confident.
Effect : Over inflated sense of own abilities, Millennials gets fired.
Ways to avoid Superiority Complex
• Try to identify and embrace at least one professional strength in everyone you
• Be clear on how your own strengths create your weaknesses.
• See the benefit in letting people do things their way, regardless of whether you
think it's the right way.
• Bite your tongue before pointing out the mistakes of others.
• Give 3X as many compliments as you give criticism.
“Treat others as you want to be treated”
Can it be taught?
Yes. “Empathy is like muscles of human body”
Even if some of us are born with a more naturally muscular build, we all can exercise to make our
Likewise, we can improve our empathy if we commit to using it in every interaction in our daily lives.
A Solid Foundation in EI Starts with Empathy
Empathy at Workplace
Do you think “Empathy” is essential at workplace?
• Millennial’s desire to have meaning and authenticity at workplace
• Employee’s demand for “human face” from employer
• People’s desire to receive the word with humanity, personality, and true feeling
“Many leadership theories suggest the ability to have and display empathy is an
important part of leadership.”
Nature, Role and Benefits of Empathy
Q. Why does it matter for us to understand the needs of others?
A. By understanding others we develop closer relationships.
Q. What traits/behaviors distinguish someone as empathetic?
A. Empathy requires three things: listening, openness and understanding.
Q. What role does empathy play in the workplace? Why does it matter?
A. When we understand our team, we have a better idea of the challenges ahead of us.
Q. So why aren’t we being more empathetic at work?
A. Empathy takes work.
Empathy at workplace
• Improve employee morale
• Build trust in professional relationship
• Helps in retaining clients
• Creates empathetic employee engagement
• Suspends disbelieves
• Reduce fear from ridicule
Types of Empathy
1. Cognitive Empathy (perspective-taking): Being able to put yourself into someone else’s
place, and see their perspective. Effectively, cognitive empathy is ‘empathy by thought’,
rather than by feeling.
2. Emotional Empathy (emotional contagion): Feeling other person’s emotions alongside
them, as if you had ‘caught’ the emotions.
3. Compassionate Empathy: Feeling someone’s pain, and taking action to help. feeling
someone’s pain, and taking action to help.
In balancing all types of empathy:
1. Cognitive Empathy : Under- emotional, More-logical
2. Emotional Empathy : Over-emotional, Less-logical
3. Compassionate Empathy : Balanced Logic and Emotion
Guidelines for Empathic Listening
• Be attentive. Be interested. Be alert and not distracted. Create a positive atmosphere through
• Be a surrounding board (allow speakers to bounce ideas and feeling off you while assuming a
nonjudgmental, non-critical manner).
• Don’t ask a lot of question to avoid grilling situation.
• Act like a mirror (reflect what speaker is feeling and saying).
• Ensure that you are listening (response lile, “I see … ” or invite like, “Tell me about … ” or “I
would like to hear about … ”).
• Give feedback about your understanding and how you think speaker feels.
• Follow good listening ground rules.
• Put aside your viewpoint, and try to see things from the other
person's point of view
• Validate the other person's perspective
• Examine your attitude
• Are you more concerned with getting your way, winning, or being right? Or, is
your priority to find a solution, build relationships, and accept others?
Without an open mind and attitude, you probably won't have enough room
• Ask what the other person would do
Good Listening Rubrics
• Don’t interrupt.
• Don’t change the subject or move in a new direction
• Don’t rehearse in your own head
• Don’t interrogate
• Don’t teach
• Don’t advice
“I think we should talk more about our empathy deficit - the ability to put ourselves
in someone else's shoes; to see the world through the eyes of those who are
different from us - the child who's hungry, the steelworker who's been laid off, the
family who lost the entire life they built together when the storm came to town.
When you think like this, when you choose to broaden your ambit of concern and
empathize with the plight of others, whether they are close friends or distant
strangers; it becomes harder not to act; harder not to help.”
- Barak Obama (2006)
Ten things that requires Talent
2. Being coachable
3. Being on time
4. Being prepared
5. Body language
6. Doing extra
10. Work ethics
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One machine can do the work of fifty men but no machine can do the work of one extraordinary man.