Welcome back to our series on compassion in the workplace! In part one, we covered the ins and outs of compassionate leadership. Today, we’ll cover some of our favorite examples of compassionate leadership – as well as share some fantastic resources for leaders interested in unlocking their full potential.
1: LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner
Weiner describes himself as “a practitioner of compassionate management.” Weiner came to appreciate the value of compassion after reading the Dalai Lama’s book The Art of Happiness.
Speaking on the value of compassionate leadership, Weiner had this to say:
“The long-term value of a company is based on the speed and quality of its decision-making.” According to Weiner, LinkedIn’s compassionate atmosphere allows the social media giant to “make important decisions in minutes or hours that some companies debate for months.”
2: Atlantic Philanthropies Founder and Duty-Free Shopping Co-founder Chuck Feeney
Feeney is the mind behind the “Giving while Living” movement. The philosophy behind ‘Giving while Living’ is profound. Feeney intends to give away his entire fortune – the $8 billion he’s amassed throughout his life – before he dies. In Feeney’s own words, “if you give it away today, you can see what it’s gonna do. Giving while dead, you don’t feel anything,” Feeney chuckles.
Feeney and his compassion-based business philosophies have inspired other billionaires like Bill Gates, Oprah and Warren Buffet to donate heavily to causes across the world.
3: Sodexo Corporate Services Worldwide CEO Sylvia Metayer
There’s nothing we can say about Sylvia’s approach to compassionate leadership she hasn’t already said herself in a recent interview:
“I’ve been CEO for 18 months, so I’m learning. I’m learning that to be a CEO is to be a servant. My main job is to support our employees, and be a support to our clients and to our consumers. In supporting our employees, I think the most important thing– and it really comes as a consolidation of many trends–is how do you make people’s work easier? It’s why we focus a lot on the impact of automation robotics technology and the work that our people do. It’s also very much about making them ready. The world is changing very fast, so we have to create career paths, and we have to support the training of our people so that they’re ready for change. It’s actually quite an endeavor because it means shifting our organization from a very traditional model, which is very top-down, to one where we learn how to be collaborative.”
We hope these examples of compassionate leaders have given you a model to aspire to. If you want to learn more about how you can become a compassionate leader, we suggest the following resources:
- Harvard Business Review’s “Are You a Compassionate Leader?” puts you through a 28-question survey that assesses your leadership style. You can take the survey here.
- The University at Berkley’s “Greater Good Science Center” has a multitude of excellent studies on the effects of compassionate leadership in the workplace.
- Monica C. Worline’s book “Awakening Compassion at Work” is your one-stop-shop for understanding the value of compassionate leadership.
- Every year in Seattle, Cory Custer, the Director of Compassion at wealth-management firm Brighton Jones, holds a wildly popular “Compassionate Leadership Summit.” If you can make it, it’s a fantastic place to get the latest in compassionate leadership and meet other like-minded leaders.
At TRIBAL, we help leaders create a meaningful, inspired workplace, enabling employees to build authentic relationships by harnessing the power of strategic storytelling. If you’re interested in creating a culture of compassion and inspiration at your workplace, you can learn more about TRIBAL below.
What Is Tribal?
TRIBAL is a relationship and community building platform that helps leaders build strong, inspired teams.
TRIBAL uses strategic storytelling to enable and enhance meaningful relationships across all levels of your organization. By leveraging the inherent tribal nature and impactful stories your organization has, TRIBAL helps leaders shape a meaningful culture from the top down and bottom up. Studies show that a meaningful workplace leads to inspired employees who outperform all others.