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1 Proven Leadership Trait That Will Instantly Strengthen Your Team

Put into practice, this trait will help build high-functioning teams that produce better, faster work

Source | www.inc.com | MARCEL SCHWANTES

Most leaders would probably agree that business ultimately comes down to one thing: relationships. Making and maintaining strong connections with others will no doubt help a business leader thrive, and a key trait that helps to nurture those relationships is empathy.

By definition, empathy is the ability to understand and share the feelings of another. For example, do you recognize and appropriately respond to others’ emotions? In essence, empathy is the act of perspective-taking and, in practice, high-functioning teams emerge, they work well together, and produce better, faster work.

To explain what happens when you take empathy and infuse it into your workplace, I sought some expert insights from two leaders that embody empathy.

1. Empathy creates a productive and supportive work environment

When team members support one another to succeed and think outside the box, they’re able to move the needle without fear of failure, which leads to innovative ideas. Creativity is the driving force behind strong teams and successful businesses.

This is the perspective of Will Bartholomew, CEO and founder of D1 Training, a fitness franchise. He relies heavily on the encouragement of empathy to drive the performance and happiness of his employees. 

“When you are aware of everyone’s baseline performance, you’ll be able to detect when something is amiss. Instead of harping on someone for a string of recent mistakes, ask them how they’re feeling. The answer will likely surprise you as poor work performance is often tied to a completely different issue — an issue that you can then address head-on,” Bartholomew says.

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