How to restore civility to the workplace

Ashley E. Hardin, assistant professor of organizational behavior, co-authors a post published on the Harvard Business Review that calls for more compassion in the workplace. The authors advocate for a more compassionate and connected workforce in an age when technology facilitates isolation and discourages civil behavior and interaction.

Restoring compassion to the workplace, the authors suggest, will not only improve the working environment, but it will also have a positive impact on productivity:

“If people feel like they belong and genuinely care about one another, they will be more creative, resilient, and eager to contribute at work.”

Hardin’s coauthors, Monica C. Worline and Jane E. Dutton, are co-founders of the CompassionLab, the world’s leading collaboratory for research on compassion and work organizations. They define compassion this way:

“A 4-part experience of noticing someone’s distress or pain, interpreting it as relevant and important, feeling concern for that person or group, and acting to alleviate their pain.”

Expressing compassion can range from small gestures to heroic acts of generosity and life-saving support in times of need, according to the authors.

Read: “Forming Stronger Bonds with People at Work.”


About Ashley Hardin

Prior to pursuing her PhD and joining Olin, Professor Hardin worked as a Senior Associate Consultant for Bain & Company and the Bridgespan Group.

Her research interests include relationships, affect, work-life boundaries, and unethical behavior. 

 

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