October 2017
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Empathy Goes a Long Way With a Bereaved Employee

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Death is a part of life, and it’s inevitable that at times our personal lives will intersect with our professional world. The loss of a loved one can happen to anyone at any time—sometimes a person is able to prepare, sometimes not. Regardless of circumstance, it’s important that managers and co-workers are understanding, and give the bereaved appropriate time and space to heal. It’s easy to grant an employee a few days to recover and attend services, but what happens when they come back to work? The pain and sadness aren't magically gone, so it’s important to extend extra consideration during a time of loss. Loren Margolis, of Training and Leadership Success LLC, says empathy and patience will go a long way during a difficult time. “Although your employee may appear fine, there may be times when their performance takes a dip, their energy is low, or they say the wrong thing in a meeting,” she says. “Everyone grieves differently, and your employee may not follow an expected pattern after their return to work. Give them extra forgiveness for mistakes and simply being 'off.'"

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