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Empathy vs. Compassion

It Staffing Services

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[et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text”]During my professional life, I have experienced many difficult situations (remember my job in customer service I mentioned this last fall?) Even though I wouldn’t necessarily want to have those experiences again, the wisdom I’ve gained from them is invaluable and I use them as references on how to handle things moving forward.

A few months ago, one of our employees came to us in a tough spot. I won’t go into too many details, but basically, he was strapped for cash. He had not started with us yet and asked us for a cash advance on his first paycheck to keep him afloat until he started in his new role with us. It was a risk, but I ultimately decided to send him the advance.

Many would look at this situation and see red flags, many of these red flags flashed through my mind as well. What if we sent him this advance and he backed out of the position he accepted? Having that happen was certainly a possibility, but my compassion for this employee’s situation lead me to take the chance in helping him out.

Sympathy -> Empathy -> Compassion.  To me that is the natural progression of things. In a previous blog I wrote about sympathy (feeling sorry for the other person) and empathy (feeling what they may be feeling). The next logical step for me is compassion; it’s about acting on those feelings.  The action does not have to be grandiose, just helpful in resolving the situation.

“Compassion is a two-way street.” – Frank Capra


How will you show compassion this weekend?