For the Best Results, Lead with Compassion

A recent article by Emma Seppala in the Harvard Business Review declares that compassion is a better managerial tactic than toughness. Seppala argues that when faced with performance issues, mistakes, and even crises, a compassionate response will get you more powerful results.

“Research has shown that feelings of warmth and positive relationships at work have greater say over employee loyalty than the size of their paycheck,” writes Seppala as she makes the case for compassion. Compassionate and kind supervision leads to loyal and trusting employees. Seppala even references research in neuroimaging which confirms that “our brains respond more positively to bosses who have shown us empathy.”

Seppala points out that we also know from neuroscience that people are not as creative or productive when they have feelings of fear and anxiety. So workplaces that remove fear and anxiety through compassion and kindness tend to be more creative and productive.

But do these creative, productive employees who are loyal and free from anxiety and fear make a difference to the success of the organization? Seppala says they do: “Other studies have shown how compassionate management leads to improvements in customer service and client outcomes and satisfaction.”

There is significant scientific evidence suggesting that compassionate and kind management leads to more productive and effective workplaces. So this week, let’s focus on compassionate and kind responses to employees who make mistakes or underperform. Let’s see if we can get them back on track by using our patience and compassion.

Thanks for reading,


P.S. – Please fee free to share this post with others you think it may benefit. Also, don’t forget to follow me on Twitter, @jvearle, and visit my website,


2 thoughts on “For the Best Results, Lead with Compassion

  1. This was a good one!

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    James J. Stossel, MBA

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