Lame short blog entry for this week. At least there’s a video… (if you watch it you’ll understand why that last line is funny).
It almost sounds like a broken record, but this week has been brutal, with early mornings and late nights and virtually everything in between being dedicated to studies, or something related to studies. It was only last night when I went and looked at my calendar from a year ago, with its blur of colored-in blocks covering the page, that I realized that not much had changed in terms of workload. Maybe a little more, but the hours were still the same, starting early and finishing late.
At least it is paying off; on Friday a team of students including myself placed second in a case competition (imagine something like a moot competition or a debating tournament, but for business cases), which was a big result. There may be some career opportunities that might come out of it too, so fingers are crossed.
But that said, time is short this week, and so is this entry. What has really stung with the lack of time is the inability to maintain relationships as well as I would like. Ironically, so much of the content of our studies has been about the importance of relationships. As it happened, our case competition entry focused on how people can build better relationships through honesty (and a little sprinkle of data analytics). And in a midweek seminar, we debated how in order to build a memorable impression on other people, we ourselves had to show empathy to them.
Somewhere in the middle of this, one of my fellow MAMBAs sent me a short video on the concept of empathy, and how we can be more empathetic to others:
It makes logical sense, and yet it is so hard to achieve at times. We’re all guilty of defaulting to showing sympathy and not empathy. It’s a constant struggle to be a more understanding person. The best we can do is try every day to be better at it, and learn from our mistakes.
Sometimes I wonder how it might be possible to build solutions that help people be better to each other. I feel as if we all could use something that prompts us, nudges us towards being more empathetic and thoughtful of others’ feelings.
A recent hackathon (yes, that’s a word) at Facebook led to the development of a “Sympathy” button to complement the “Like” button, for those times when liking something is socially inappropriate. But maybe an empathy button would be better. Not just for the sentiment, but as a prompt to ourselves to actually be empathetic.
Who knows, it might just work.
Observations on music, coffee, and the occasional controversial thought.
Copyright © Gerard Atkinson 2013. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from the owner is strictly prohibited.