We spend a lot of time designing the bridge, but not enough time thinking about the PEOPLE who're crossing it.
Dr. P Singh
As the strange lady walked away, my eyes filled with unexplained tears...
Right before walking away, she said something that still echoes in my ears.
Everyone hates teachers pets, right? The nerdy kid always completing the homeworks on time, always standing next to the teacher helping her (him) out and staring at the teachers' face like a curious puppy, amazed by the magic of knowledge, soaking in and taking notes...
Well, I was that teachers' pet! And it all began that exam morning when I was trying too hard to explain in written, if x=5, wtf does y= ---------- ??? While concentrating on the equation and cursing algebra, I was slouching so bad, my eyes were barely 3 inches away from the paper. And then a strange examiner lady appeared and said,
"hey kiddo, your eyes might get damaged, sit up".
Now I know, that may not be the Liam Neeson dialogue that usually shudders Algerians in all the Taken series, but it moved me. And that was the moment I experienced EMPATHY as a young adult from a total stranger who had nothing to loose if my eyes would get fried like meatballs and get fed to birds.
BUSINESS is the act of empathising with humans. Any idiot can sell crap by scam; tycoons and leaders are empathisers first, sellers second.
What impact did that little act of empathy make?
Well, how does a score of 96% in Economics sound?
I trusted her more than anyone and her Economics 101 got me to score 99% in my MBA finals.
The same lesson applies in business.
Whether you're selling to a stranger or to your colleagues or seniors, if you fail to empathise first, you're not going too far.
As simple as this sounds, it apalls me how little time is spent by managers, entrepreneurs & leaders, actually trying to empathise with their target audiences.
ON THE STAGE
In case you have a few spare minutes and want to know where I come from and where am I a local at