Two words you never hear together: corporate and kindness. They are practically oxymorons – but not so fast. Lara Heacock works with corporations on kindness to combat overwhelm and burnout. Now according to Lara, corporate kindness is different from interpersonal kindness. Corporate kindness isn’t about hugs and singing choruses of Kumbaya. It’s about corporations extending corporate amenities to their employees without guilt.
Think of the millions of hours of vacation time the average American employee forfeits. Then, add in the sick days that aren’t taken (when employees are actually sick) and the emails that are checked when employees do finally take a vacation. The truth of the matter is that many companies discourage employees from taking the time off and benefits that companies offer. Fear of retaliation, fear of missing out, fear of getting behind are just some of the fears too many employees are scared of coming to fruition.
Yet, corporations, more importantly managers and upper-level leadership can do a lot to alleviate these fears. Lara works with them to develop a culture that embodies concern and compassion while bolstering the bottom line.
Let’s look at sick days. A sick employee heads into work. Little gets down between the coughing, sniffling and sneezing. After several days of this, the employee is worse and has no choice but to take a sick day. Meanwhile, several people in surrounding cubes are sick. How much is getting done now? Not much.
Burnout is a little more subtle but just as detrimental. Everyone needs a break. Vacations are nice but so are evenings and weekends. Companies with kindness keep afterwork contact at a minimum, giving their employees time to relax and recharge. Performance improves when the employees are rested and focused.
Corporate kindness is an actual, real thing. Hopefully, it’s a phenomenon that will catch on.
Book: Practical Kindness
Listen to Corporate Kindness
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