At the end of 2020, I was struggling, in the last few months the size of my reporting line had ballooned from 2 to 25 and I was struggling to scale the empathetic approach that I had always applied to my leadership. 2 people's problems were manageable, 25 was overwhelming and had made me start to question if senior leadership was within my capabilities. So I sought help, professional help, from a therapist.
In my first therapy session, we dug into my challenges and my therapist said something that triggered an interesting journey for me.
She said, “25 people? oh that’s interesting that’s the maximum number of clients I’m allowed to have at any one time”.
Over the next few sessions, we covered how similar our jobs were, and how I could use the coping mechanisms and processes she used in her job to make me a better leader.
I will talk about how I’ve adapted these basic principles like Solution-Focused Brief Therapy and applied them to be able to support my managers, and their reports dealing with empathy at scale.