105: Bringing Kindness into the Workplace

Who doesn’t want more kindness in their life? Yet it’s not always easy to be kind, especially at work where tensions run high or we risk kindness being interpreted as weakness. Throw a pandemic on top of that and you’ve got an unbelievably stressful environment — which is when kindness can matter most.

Today’s guest is Jaclyn Lindsey, co-founder and CEO of kindness.org. Jaclyn believes that kindness is humanity’s greatest asset. It was this ethos that inspired her to launch kindness.org, a global non-profit building evidence-based programs for kinder classrooms, communities and workplaces.

Jaclyn and I talk about the science of kindness, the role kindness plays in our work experience, why being kind matters, how you can still show kindness even at a distance, and how to get your team on board with the idea of being kinder at work. Now here’s the conversation!

Read the related blog article: Simple Ways to Benefit from Kindness In The Workplace

Join the Modern Manager community (www.themodernmanager.co/join) for the chance to win a copy of Be Kind: A Year of Kindness, One Week at a Time. You must be a member by July 3, 2020 to be eligible.

If you work for a nonprofit or government agency, email me at mamie@mamieks.com for 20% off any membership level.

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KEY TAKEAWAYS

  • Kindness is a choice, it’s an action.
  • Kindness is not the same as being weak, fluffy, feminine or soft.
  • Research has proven that kindness has a significant effect on happiness and overall well being for the person who acts with kindness, the recipient of the kindness, and a person who witnesses the kindness.
  • Kindness does not need to be heroic actions. The small daily interactions and behaviors often matter more. For example, simply smiling and greeting someone or asking how they are doing with genuine curiosity.
  • It often takes strength to choose kindness. There are times when we are hurt, betrayed, stressed or resentful and it seems easier to act out of negativity. But rising above and letting something go or confronting it with an open mind demonstrates you are willing to go to great lengths to seek to better yourself and the team.
  • One of the most powerful acts of kindness a manager can do is consistently say good morning to their team members. It’s simply acknowledging the person.
  • You can show kindness at a distance by sending an email, a message on Slack, a handwritten note, calling a team member to check in on them, etc.
  • Introduce kindness to your team by having a conversation about what kindness means to you. Talk about why kindness matters and what it looks like in a work setting. Let your team know that kindness is welcomed and encouraged.
  • Often people just need to know that it’s acceptable to be kind, it’s expected that we care for each other.
  • Share stories in a meeting or via Slack of moments where kindness made a difference in your life, or, where you experienced a lack of kindness and how that impacted you.
  • Think about how you can put kindness at the forefront of all you do, recognizing that we can never fully understand or know someone else’s story, but we can approach each person and situation with a generosity of spirit.

KEEP UP WITH JACLYN

Twitter: @jaclyndsey and @kindness_org

Website: https://kindness.org/

Facebook: @kindnessorg

Instagram: @kindnessorg

Email: jaclyn@kindness.org

mamie@mamieks.com

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