What Empathy Does for Business Leaders
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What Empathy Does for Business Leaders

Kellogg has a rich history of developing leaders with empathy and producing significant research on this topic. Related research from our faculty spans natural areas like management, organizational behavior, and marketing—but also less obvious areas like accounting, game theory, economics, and finance.

In celebration of the new Kabiller Science of Empathy Prize, which is intended to advance the understanding of human empathy, we have compiled a sampling of Kellogg faculty research and insights on the topic of empathy and why it matters for business leaders.

The prize will be awarded to a Kellogg faculty member who has conducted novel research that advances analytical and rigorous critical thinking about human empathy, understanding, and trust. The prize will also recognize a Kellogg alumnus who demonstrates exceptional empathy. For more on the prize and our call for alumni nominations, please visit the Kabiller Science of Empathy Prize page.

Social standing affects the level of empathy in an office.

How Much Empathy Do You Feel When Powerful People Suffer?

What about less powerful people? Your answers likely depend on how egalitarian you are.

Ego depletion can lead to unethical behavior at work.

Why Bosses Cut Some Employees Slack for Unethical Behavior

The same transgression can lead to different consequences. Here’s one reason why.

A leader uses social-emotional intelligence to stay calm in the midst of conflict

Why Leaders Should Nurture Their Social–Emotional Intelligence

These four skills can diffuse conflict, particularly within family businesses.

An employee struggles to show empathy in the workplace.

I (Don’t) Feel Your Pain

Having been there does not always increase empathy.


Downplaying Social Pain

Snubs and rejections hurt worse than others think they do