Empathy May Not Be Good — Keep It Going

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IN THE absence of real value-adding messages, the tendency is to fall back on motherhood statements like “productivity” and “empathy” as feel-good safety nets.

While they are often used as terms of encouragement, when they become mantras of business practice, things may not necessarily go to plan.

Among the various issues discussed at Keep It Going: Beyond Design — Unconventional Design Thinking, held at W. Atelier recently, Dennis Foo’s closing comment on how empathy worked against his business stood out for its honesty and relevance.

Dennis Foo, Keep It Going: By Design

While businesses value the significant role that employees play in building it up, the expectations and demands have to be tempered with the times.

Foo’s comments served as  a reality check for business owners and, hopefully, employees.

While you try and do what you can for your employees, when times get tough, you seldom see empathy flowing back.

Foo, who has been through the ups and downs of the entertainment industry has been associated with household brands he had built up over the decades — Europa, Peppermint Park, Devil’s Bar, St. James Power Station and Shanghai Dolly.


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Watch out for other reports on the panel discussions in the coming days.

Keep It Going: Beyond Design is sponsored by OUE, [email protected] and W.Atelier.

If you would like to attend upcoming sessions, email [email protected] with your contact details, and feel free to add your comments.

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