Compassion and empathy are two words that are used interchangeably, and neither are necessarily accepted in the workplace. Sure, we all know the importance of taking personal experiences and challenges into consideration. But these are loaded words that aren’t always accepted.
The thing is, compassion and empathy are two different things. Compassion is about recognizing someone else’s suffering while empathy is the response to that suffering. Compassion is inherent; humans naturally have this quality…until it’s trained out of us. And that is a tragedy.
This week on the podcast, I’m talking with Jane M. Chun, PhD about encouraging leaders and teams to be human at work by practicing compassion on the job. There’s a whole field of compassion science and a movement toward more compassion and it felt so good to talk to someone whose whole career is built on compassion.
In the episode, we talk about how leaders can be intentional about cultivating compassion, why changing your thinking about compassion might feel challenging, the difference between compassion and empathy, and why compassion is such a loaded word.
Listen on your favourite podcast player
About Jane Chun, PhD.:
Jane M. Chun is the Program Director overseeing Compassion Institute’s work in the health and systems transformation sectors. Jane’s expertise includes program development, change facilitation, partnership development, and research and learning.
Jane has worked with intergovernmental and nonprofit organizations including UNICEF, UNDP, IOM, and Search for Common Ground, and has conducted research for institutions such as The Brookings Institution, Oxford Refugee Studies Center, and Viet Nam Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
Throughout the pandemic, Jane and her team have supported the mental health of healthcare and public health workers on the front lines of the pandemic. Through her experience in a range of settings, she has come to believe that deep social and systems transformation can only occur hand-in-hand with inner transformation. Focusing primarily on WHAT we do is not enough. We need to also inquire into HOW and WHY we do that work.
Mentioned In This Episode:
- Compassion Institute
- Connect with Jane on LinkedIn
- Season 5 Episode 1: Live the Life You Love
- Mental Health Skills Training
- Join the monthly digital subscription