The Heart of Effective Leadership: How empathy can make you a successful leader.

Back in the 1950’s Carl Rogers identified three characteristics that psychotherapists should possess: warmth, genuineness, and empathy. Considerable research supported Rogers’ idea.

Regardless of the therapeutic orientation of the therapist, these three variables facilitated clients making positive changes. Building a positive relationship with the client has been viewed as an important part of effective psychotherapy. Over time, this concept has been included in, and adapted for, a variety of therapeutic approaches….

How can leaders be more effective?

  1. By listening to staff. When a leader seeks input from various levels within an organization, this helps staff feel valued.
  2. By reflecting back to staff what has been said.
  3. By using positive communication whenever possible. By acknowledging individual and group accomplishments, a leader builds a “positive balance” in the “emotional bank account” of staff, thus helping everyone feel more invested in the organization.

by Barbara Markway,