Empathy & Accountability: Mixing the Secret Sauce

It’s no secret that accountability is one of the key ingredients for a successful business. But what if I told you there was a “secret sauce” to Human Centered Leadership that could take your team’s accountability to the next level? That secret sauce is empathy. Empathy allows us to understand, accept and support our teams in a way that makes them feel heard and valued. Let’s dive into how empathy and healthy accountability go hand-in-hand.

What is Empathy?

Empathy is the ability to put yourself in another person’s shoes, understand their feelings and experience life from their perspective. It isn’t simply an emotional act, it is largely cognitive or thinking-focused in the workplace. Cognitively, we make an educated guess based on your own knowledge and past experiences. Then, as the popular definition goes, “we put ourselves in the other person’s shoes.”This is a crucial first step of engaging with empathy.

How Empathy Powers Accountability

When we talk about empathy in the workplace, it often involves understanding where your colleagues are coming from and being aware of their needs. This could involve actively listening to their ideas or taking an interest in their challenges; whatever it is, having real empathy for those around you means valuing them as individuals beyond just their job functions. When we apply this concept in the workplace, it allows us to have more productive conversations with our teams, create deeper relationships and increase our understanding of their needs and motivations. This creates an environment where people feel comfortable being held accountable because they know they are respected as individuals. Doesn’t everyone want to work in this kind of environment? Yessiree, they do!


When we show empathy towards others, it also increases our own self-awareness—a trait essential for creating effective teams. Self-awareness helps us understand how our words and actions influence those around us, which can prevent us from making snap judgments or lashing out when expectations aren’t met. This encourages team members to own up to their mistakes without fear of judgment or punishment, allowing them to learn from their mistakes and stay on track with their goals.

Ultimately, having genuine and healthy empathy in the workplace isn’t about being soft at all, it is infused with accountability as well. Showing compassion (empathy in action) towards your colleagues while also holding them responsible for their actions helps create an environment where everyone feels valued and respected while still ensuring high standards are maintained within your organization so that everybody succeeds together!

Award Winning Recipe

Finally, empathizing with our teams can help build trust between leaders and employees and this is essential for healthy accountability within an organization. When team members trust their leaders, they are more likely to be engaged in their work, staly true to themselves and do what it takes to reach company goals both individually and together as a collective unit.

Empathy helps us understand each other better, creates healthier relationships between managers and employees, encourages self-awareness among team members and ultimately strengthens trust within an organization—all while providing the necessary framework for holding everyone accountable without causing resentment or anger along the way. So, if you’re looking for the award winning recipe to increase productivity within business while keeping morale high then look no further—and start infusing the empathetic practices that are central to Human Centered Leadership into your day-to-day work world.

!! ADDED BONUS!! Becoming a more Human Centered Leader and PERSON that stretches and practices empathy with other will help your personal relationships and productivity too!

Empathy is largely a thinking or cognitive effort. It is a decision to listen, understand and share that understanding back with another person.

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