2018 Symposium Pre-Conference

Approved for 2 SHRM PDCs and 2 HR (General) HRCI Credits!

Empathy in the Workplace
Empathy is the act of putting yourself in someone else’s shoes to gain a different perspective on a situation, event, or belief. Studies have shown us empathetic leaders provide better leadership resulting in higher levels of productivity and job satisfaction.


Empathetic leaders rely on their specific tools to observe, listen, and ask questions of those around them to make decisions. They don’t make bottom-line decisions without considering the people involved. This often means leaders must think outside the box to make decisions that benefit both the company and the people who work for the company.

Keynote speaker Anne Converse Willkomm, will answer the question: Can empathy be learned and/or cultivated? Hint…the answer is yes. She will look at simple ways to fine-tune empathy tools for leaders and those who support leaders, giving you three ways to develop your empathy skills and three ways to encourage management to be empathetic in their leadership. Through a case study, she will demonstrate how empathy can take shift a dysfunctional office into a functional one. And get your empathy skills ready for an interactive learning activity.

The session will close with a panel discussion in which the panelists will dive into the role empathy should play in the workplace.

Learning Objectives:

Through this session, participants will be able to:

  1. Describe how empathy can be used as an effective tool in managing people and teams.
  2. Identify 3 ways to develop personal empathy skills
  3. Identify 3 ways to encourage management to be empathetic in their leadership

Anne Converse Willkomm, Assistant Clinical Professor, Dept. Head of Graduate Studies, Goodwin College, Drexel University


Stephanie Johnson, Director of Graduate Career Services, Drexel’s LeBow College of Business
Jason Magidson, Business Process Engineer, AmeriHealth Caritas
Alison Davis, Founder and CEO, Davis & Company

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