Why is Compassionate Leadership Important

Why is compassionate leadership important?

Business leaders nowadays, more often than not, quickly resort to workforce replacement than improvement. This is a problem for both the employees and the business. Aside from the extrinsic cost of frequent workforce change, businesses also forego opportunities.

Many leaders, both public and private, assert authority over their team. It has been this way ever since and it’s still continuing today. I’m not saying that having authority is a bad thing, it’s actually an asset but modern leadership styles also include compassion than just authority.

It’s important to include compassion in your current work environment to adapt to the market changes in the workforce. It is crucial for business leaders to be well aware and compassionate of / her workforce. Compassion could be the difference between a business’ growth and failure.

Importance of compassionate leadership

Compassion in the workplace is important because it affects the whole business. Although most businesses practice empathy towards their employees, progressive business leaders act upon it. Here’s why:

  • Productivity – traditionally, managers would incentivize their employee’s productivity but the effects of these efforts are short and lasting. Compassion provides consistency for longer periods because the employees are naturally compelled to work for leaders without artificial motivators.
  • Communication – feedback is essential in the development of any business. Unfortunately, most companies, especially the authority led organizations, usually have a one-way feedback system and when employees are asked for their opinion, it is often unclear.

    Compassionate leadership fixes this issue. By understanding and where the employee is coming from, leaders could get a clear idea of an employee’s current status, needs, and improvements. An open style of communication fosters clarity and innovation.
  • Workplace Friction – it is evident that more and more companies are adapting to a more diverse work environment. Compassionate leaders are progressive when it comes to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the workplace by being just and fair towards all their employees regardless of race, gender, and status.


  • What is the difference between compassion and empathy?
    • Empathy is the tendency to feel an employee’s feelings toward a certain subject; compassion, on the other hand, is the active willingness to contribute to an employee’s wellbeing.

      for example, the human resource department of a certain company conducts surveys and seminars to see the current state of their employees. That’s empathy. Let’s say that that certain company provides the needs of their employees based on those surveys and seminars, that’s compassion. It’s the difference between knowing and doing
  • How do leaders show compassion?
    • Leaders must show genuine compassion in the workplace by being open to feedback and acting upon it. I know accepting bad feedback may be a tough pill to swallow especially if you’re in the business for a long time but these feedbacks on your leadership style is beneficial for your company’s success.
  • How do you deal with compassion fatigue in the workplace?
    • Communicating with your employees can lessen compassion fatigue within the workplace. Let’s face it. Employees don’t go to the HR or to their bosses whenever they have problems, they go directly to their co-workers. This practice creates compassion fatigue in your team.

      By being open and lowering your walls down for communication as a leader, you simultaneously help your whole team prevent  this type of fatigue.

Benefits of compassionate leadership

  • Loyalty – Compassionate leaders tend to have a loyal team of employees. This secures your business’ continuity in the sense that your employees become more reliable. Compassion is also a key factor in building resilience among your employees.
  • Less cost – As a compassionate leader, you would want to know how you can help your employees develop their well-being. Targeting the key pain points will leave you with less costs than simply giving trainings that are not in line with their developmental goals and the skills that would help them in their jobs.
  • Efficiency –  A motivated team would perform exceedingly well especially if it’s led with compassion. Employees that feel compassion from their managers and business leaders naturally feel motivated to exceed the expectations from their jobs. No time wasted!
  • Fulfillment – There is a misconception that employees mainly stay in a company because of the benefits. This is just one of the many factors why an employee stays in the company. Top talents are loyal to their companies because there is a feeling of fulfillment through recognition, respect and value which are all acts of compassion.
  • Less stress – in terms of problem solving, there would be less stress for you and for your employee because the communication is clear and transparent, and the underlying problems are solved at the root cause. No overthinking!

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