Empathy – business tool

It is finally irrefutable that emotions are the centre of our human universe. Everything, absolutely everything, we consciously engage in, whether thought or deed, is driven by our emotions. No matter whether you are sat at your desk doing multi-million pound deals or sitting in the garden playing with the children, the drivers are all emotions.

For most business boards, this is terrible news. Since the first trades, business has been trying to eradicate what it sees as the uncertainty attached to emotions. Business has continually sought to identify order and processes so they might be replicated in order to maximise profits. Uncountable billions have been spent in this fruitless chase too.

Given that it’s here, it’s now and it’s got to be dealt with, what’s the best way forward?

Strangely, and gladly, it is surprisingly simple. All normal human beings have empathy ‘hardwired’ within them, and empathy is the key to unlocking the mystery of, and capitalising on, emotions.

empathy (1)What is empathy?

The Oxford English Dictionary tells us that empathy is, “The ability to understand and share the feelings of another.” As always the OED is spot-on, but that definition is utterly useless unless it is translated into something much more pragmatic for business.