The consequence of being able to transform tensions is that the vibe is raised. Or at least that the vibe doesn’t fall down in change projects or when new ways of working like agile or self-organizing teams are introduced.
A compassionate attitude means a.o. perceiving other people as equivalent human beings and acting accordingly.
However, this is easier said than done.
The way work is organized we easily end up in situations that are not in balance. Because of hierarchy we usually find ourselves in a position of power or dependency. Even if we don’t want that.
This shows for example:
- A co-worker who feels limited by a manager who needs to give his approval for every little thing.
- The owner of a company who feels responsible for the employees and (unconsciously) steps into a parent-child relationship.
The consequence is that personal and interpersonal tensions arise that are in the way of fruitful cooperation and achieving results.
The challenge is how to deal with each other from a position of equivalence and compassion in the given situations with different roles and functions.
The lack of compassion for others usually has its origins in not being 100% compassionate towards ourselves.
This requires self-reflection and inquiries into blind spots, shadow sides and protective patterns that limit us (unconsciously).
Besides not knowing the right techniques to solve tensions, the three most important reasons why leaders, (agile) coaches, scrum masters, chapter/squad/tribe leads and other facilitators don’t always act in a compassionate way:
- There are too many distractions, too many situations and too many people that beg for their attention, including several that give them stress.
- There are hidden differences between them and other people that create misunderstandings and keep them away from their strength.
- There are protective patterns in their lives that keep them from being the most effective, efficient and inspiring leader they can be.