Three Reasons Empathy is Vital for Solidifying Business Partnerships.
Trust and the willingness to work together to find mutually beneficial solutions are key traits to help build strong business relationships.
How do you build trust and collaborate? It often comes down to empathy, or the ability to understand and recognize the feelings of others.
Although empathy is often mistaken for sympathy, it can go beyond that. Sympathy can be described as feeling sorry for someone who is in distress. On the other hand, the Heart seeks to understand and show compassion to another person and give them the understanding and value they deserve.
Leaders who understand empathy and how it can impact their business relationships can be better positioned to create more successful and meaningful partnerships.
1. Empathy considers how different factors affect the partnership
Empathy is often described as “walking in another’s shoes,” but true compassion, especially in business, can and should go beyond that. Brene Brown is a renowned researcher and hosts the Dare to a Lead podcast. In an interview with ConantLeadership, he explained that empathy is more than just “walking in someone else’s shoes.”
Brown explained that leaders should believe in the feelings and experiences of others regardless of who they are talking to.
This is particularly important when setting expectations for business partnerships. Many factors can affect the viability of a block, including their geographic location, capacity, and turnover of staff members.
Empathetic leaders are sensitive to the limitations and capabilities of their partners when setting goals. They make adjustments as necessary to ensure mutually beneficial outcomes.
2. Empathy drives open communication and shares goals
Because empathy requires vulnerability, it is often lacking in the workplace. It helps to ensure successful partnerships.
Natanya Wachtel, a psychologist and clinician explained that empathy allows others to share their struggles, successes, and motives. You should also be open to receiving reciprocation. This allows for deeper conversations and helps us to get to know each other better, not as providers of goods or services. This gives the relationship depth and meaning that allows everyone to share success.
This level of transparency and openness can help business partners to identify growth opportunities and assess whether their contributions meet expectations. It also ensures that both sides remain committed to a common goal.
Empathetic business partners strive to be transparent with their clients. It is impossible to withhold information to get the upper hand. These are real people working together to achieve a common goal. You are open to sharing your vulnerabilities and letting others know what you need, so everyone has the necessary resources to succeed.
3. Empathy allows for better resolutions when there are differences
Even the most successful partnerships will eventually face disagreements, conflicts, and other setbacks. This is easy to see in music. One could argue that The Beatles’ disintegration was due to a lack of empathy.
Instead of trying to understand other perspectives, the band allowed the conflict to slowly overtake the sense of camaraderie that had defined the earlier years.
A lack of empathy in a business partnership can lead to similar failures. Business partners can create barriers between themselves and each other when they are supposed to be more open and compassionate.
Truly compassionate partners will open communication lines to help each other understand the causes and solutions when they experience setbacks. This is not done to attack the partner verbally. It is done to find a solution to improve the partnership and get things back on track.
There may be situations where it is best to end the partnership, but there are many other ways to strengthen and repair a business relationship that was successful in the past.
Empathy is a better way to show empathy.
Although empathy can seem daunting, leaders such as Brene Brown know that learning is possible. Brown stated that empathy could be taught like other skills you depend on to succeed in business. Empathy is not something you have to have or not.
Empathy is a skill that can make a real difference in business relationships.