Be The Compassionate Leader All Want To Work For

by Srikant Chellappa May 28,2020

The People Strategy Leaders Podcast

with Srikant Chellappa, CEO

We are all aware of how toxic leaders can wreck an organization. We don’t need a study to prove that. Toxic leaders can take a perfectly good organization and wreck it from the inside out.

We are sure, you do not wish to be one of those toxic leaders. Rather, in this article we will talk to you about compassionate leaders and  the effect they have on an organization.

When we look for desirable qualities in leaders, we look for traits such as go-getter, decisive, dynamic, change-oriented etc… all qualities which indicate that the person is poised to take action at all times. In the process, we miss out on looking for kindness, compassion, empathy, etc, niceties that are equally important.

For the longest time, to be ‘good’ or ‘nice’ in the workplace also meant that the employee in question would perpetually be playing second fiddle to others, regardless of his talent. It would’ve been hard to consider him for a leadership position.

But for every study that shows how much agreeability holds us back there are also studies which show us that kindness is a valuable commodity in any workplace.

What do you think are some of most tangible and visible effects of kindness and compassion in leaders? Can they really affect organizations in positive ways?

Also read: 7 Reasons Why Goal Setting is Important

Enhanced level of trust:

When leaders are kind towards employees, they gain great amount of trust in the eyes of employees. This is further enhanced when leaders follow up kind words with actions. A toxic leader is going to put employees constantly on their guard. A kind leader makes employees feel comfortable, making it easy for them to trust not only others, but also their own capabilities.

Greater level of accountability:

Compassionate leaders are good at making employees feel that they are a part of the organization. They don’t just aim for employee engagement on the surface. Instead, they do their best to give employees a stake in the organization’s success. This might mean showing employees the impact of their efforts or might include giving employees a project that has a visible effect on the organization’s success.

Freedom of thought and diversity:

Compassionate leaders create a culture of openness in the organization. This might include a breakdown of rigid hierarchical structures, allowing not only different opinions to be heard but also, welcomed as well. Additionally, these leaders also create diverse culture that feature employees’ from all background. They make a conscious effort to be inclusive and broad-minded.


Good leaders are honest and transparent about their actions and words. This also extends to taking responsibility, admitting wrongdoing and most importantly, apologizing for a mistake. As a result, this habit of transparency also begins to affect employees. Honest leaders spur employees to be honest themselves. In most cases, this honesty is not a byproduct of a leader exhorting employees to be honest. Rather, it comes about from a desire to emulate the good qualities that they see in their own leader.

Flexibility at its core:

A good leader focuses less on rigid hierarchical processes and more on what makes employees comfortable. This means tweaking processes to suit the needs of employees, getting rid of certain rustic rules, enabling managers to exercise greater control over how managers manage their teams etc.

Greater flexibility doesn’t just set employees at ease. It also says a lot about an organization’s culture, the most important fact being that, they are open to change.

When an organization is flexible, employees don’t feel the need to second guess every move. And of course, this in turn leads to greater employee engagement.

Also read: Good HR Management Software Can Promote Work-Life Balance

Engagedly is offering a suite of products part of its Remote Work Toolkit free to any organisation, until Sept 30th, 2020. 

The Coronavirus has affected the way we work today and for months to come. Unprecedented events require unprecedented measures. We at Engagedly believe it is our responsibility as socially conscious corporate citizens to help equip organisations with additional tools and resources during this time of crisis.

Get in touch with us to know more about the free remote working tool-kit. 

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Srikant Chellappa
CEO & Co-Founder of Engagedly

Srikant Chellappa is the Co-Founder and CEO at Engagedly and is a passionate entrepreneur and people leader. He is an author, producer/director of 6 feature films, a music album with his band Manchester Underground, and is the host of The People Strategy Leaders Podcast. He is currently working on his next book, Ikigai at the Workplace, which is slated for release in the fall of 2024.

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