As a leader, it is easy to disregard the need for empathy in coaching conversations. Usually, coaches and trainees sit on either side of the table. There is a difference in point of view, experience, and current situations. In these circumstances, a leader or a coach can often forgo the quality of empathy. But, only empathetic conversations can help connect a leader to their team. Let’s learn more about how coaching conversations can help leaders in holding meaningful conversations.
Why do leaders need to be empathetic in conversations?
Empathy is often used interchangeably with sympathy, although the former is distinct from the latter. Sympathy is about understanding someone else’s feelings and emotions from your viewpoint. Empathy, on the other hand, takes it a step further. It involves placing oneself in another person’s shoes to comprehend what they are going through, their values, and their opinions. Why should we focus on how coaching conversations can help leaders becomes more empathetic?
- Leaders are guides. They have to be empathetic to help teams unlock their true potential. They need to make their team feel comforted, valued, and heard. People are more likely to improve when they are surrounded by empathetic leaders.
- Leaders walk alongside their team, and a bond of trust and respect gradually develops. Empathy can help nurture that bond, contributing to the mental well-being of subordinates and employees.
How can leaders become empathetic speakers and listeners?
1. Be open to other perspectives without prejudice:
People value their perspectives more than others, but a leader has to be flexible and accepting. The moment you try to understand the other person and stop yourself from providing judgment or reacting, coaching conversations becomes natural.
2. Reign in your ego:
During coaching conversations, it is easy to let ego control the communication. Bid farewell to your ego. Try to place all your focus on the other person. That’s the first step to having empathetic conversations.
3. Be an active listener and articulate:
Try to become an engaged listener. Communicate what you think the speaker is trying to get at. Active communication lays a good foundation for empathetic conversations.
4. Take your time: You can’t nurture empathy in a day.
Take your time to develop the quality and use it during conversations. With practice, it becomes a part of you.
Leaders are humans too. So, don’t feel discouraged if empathetic conversations aren’t your forte from day 1. Over time and regular practice, you can master the art of holding empathetic conversations.
A Final Note:
Becoming an empathetic leader requires practice and training. If you want to learn the art of coaching conversations, enroll in Team Transformation’s course. Our Leadership Coaching Certification, Executive Coaching Certification, Professional Coach Certification, and ICF PCC Certification are some of the courses you would want to check out. Head to our website and say yes to becoming a better leader today.