Empathy Driving Engaged Sustainability in Enterprises
This chapter suggests a vision for human activities in enterprises through the lens of engaged sustainability. We put together some important bits and pieces of insights and wisdoms that some seers among us have been able to envision. In the process we discuss empathy, emotional intelligence, social intelligence, and ecological intelligence and apply these ideas to learning organizations.
If human needs and wants were to be expressed and fulfilled only in material terms, humanity will not be able to recover the beleaguered Earth these have inflicted. If it is going to be business as usual, the unintended consequences which human actions have caused would destroy everyone. Here we attempt to understand the underlying empathetic nature of human beings that seem to “naturally” point towards giving rise to saner voices and enduring solutions.
We take the view that recovering from the impediments we face in shaping a sustainable future will not be possible if we continue to ignore the “softer” aspects of personal nature and superior interpersonal interaction humans are privy to. This chapter aims to understand whether achieving such feat can be made possible by grooming our empathetic skills in a more mindful and conscious manner. To that end, the concept of learning organizations has been applied to enhance the developmental skills across enterprises. We suggest that all enterprises, institutions, and organizations, irrespective of whether governmental, corporate, or voluntary, could embrace systemic changes to pay respect to the biospheric systems in a manner that would reverse the damage done while ensuring that the needs of future generations are respected and upheld.
KeywordsEmpathy Engaged sustainability Learning organizations Ecological intelligence Social intelligence Emotional intelligence
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