The Long and Winding Road : ‘Don’t forget empathy…’

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Liverpool

Don’t forget empathy…

I was recently watching a quirky Italian detective TV series called ‘Montalbano’ where the main character acts a lone wolf hunting down criminals. It is a very entertaining and thoughtful series based in Sicily which focuses more on the human interactions than the impact of the crimes committed. In the latest episode there was a situation which involved an elderly mafia boss brokering a deal with Montalbano to get himself arrested. As they sat in the rustic farmhouse kitchen, sharing a glass of red wine, the mafia boss revealed why he wanted to get out of the ‘business’

‘ Today’, he said ‘ the kids talk on machines, they don’t even look you in the eye. They don’t understand who you are, where you came from or your history. They don’t understand what made you what you are, they don’t care! It’s time for me to go before they sweep me aside.

Is not this the enigma we face today? The temptation to rely on machines is great and the excuses for not spending time with people even greater! Knowing who people are and their story is what makes humans unique, despite our increased connectivity we are not too far away from losing the art of true communication. I love my machines and the things I can do however I am aware that a room of four people can all too often be a room of four people engrossed in their own handheld devices and not communicating with those just yards away

The removal of emotion from daily life cause great problems, many times things are done because it seems the sensible thing to do at that specific moment but the damage caused can be far reaching. Empathy is not an attribute of machines

At 3rd Planet we try to tell people’s stories, to give insight and understanding in an effort to form relationships before we try to sell and convert interest into revenue. In many ways we are more like the old mafia boss than the kids who threatened to replace him.

Perhaps what we do on a daily basis is not fraught with high level emotions but it may well be full of potential flashpoints with co-workers and customers. Being the person who listens and does not judge is more powerful than the person who takes over and controls situations. Good content marketing is the ability to listen in such a way that what you say next is appropriate for the listener at the other end of the conversation. When we listen we make connections, when we shout we don’t…. many of us shout our accomplishments and desires and our words fall on deaf ears. Next time you stoke the fire of your social media channel make sure you are not shouting but rather find a way to listen. Listen to understand not to respond.

see you on the long and winding road….. Patrick

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