Objectivity or Empathy?

Is it better to be objective? Automatically I say yes. Objectivity allows for clearer judgement. Objectivity produces fair outcomes. Objectivity does not allow for emotions to take over or control a decision.

But is it awful to be emotional? To feel empathy? Automatically I say no. Empathy is an important character trait. It allows you to put yourself in someone else’s shoes and see situations from a different viewpoint.

I once made an observation that men are more objective by nature, where as women tend to let emotions take the lead. I have come to believe there are exceptions to this rule. I believe public relations is one of those exceptions.

Those in the PR profession, both men and women, need to have a healthy dose of both objectivity and empathy. It is important to have an objective outlook, to say yes and no when necessary. But it is also important to feel for you audience. As said by Audrey Hepburn in “Funny Face,” empathy is “the most sensible approach to true understanding and peace of mind.” With this type of understanding of a situation, PR professionals can best serve their clients.

Are mainly objective in your decision-making? Or do you allow empathy to be your guide? How about a healthy dose of each?

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3 Responses to Objectivity or Empathy?

  1. I agree. I generally lean towards the logic/reason/objectivity thought process when making decisions, but I definitely think that empathy should be a factor as well. If we don’t care (at least sometimes) for other human beings, then we’re no better than the animals!

  2. mmq99030 says:

    I would like to say that I am more objective, but it probably is not true. It is really difficult for me to keep my emotions from dictating my actions to some degree, and complete and total objectivity is impossible for anyone.

  3. yxl81090 says:

    I agree! In the field of PR, it is important to be professional and to be objective. But it is also essential for us to find a balance between objectivity and empathy. In the world of social media and all the online advertising, it is getting harder to make a genuine connection with the audiences because they all think corporations do not care. So yes, be objective of how you can serve them to their best interest, but at the same time, show your empathy and have an open conversation with them to nuture a relationship.

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