Compassion at Work

Posted: 25 Mar 2014

See all articles by Jane E. Dutton

Jane E. Dutton

University of Michigan, Stephen M. Ross School of Business

Kristina M. Workman

Cornell University - School of Hotel Administration

Ashley E. Hardin

University of Michigan, Stephen M. Ross School of Business

Date Written: March 2014

Abstract

Compassion is an interpersonal process involving the noticing, feeling, sensemaking, and acting that alleviates the suffering of another person. This process has recently received substantial attention by organizational researchers and practitioners alike. This article reviews what researchers currently know about compassion as it unfolds in dyadic interactions in work organizations. We begin by reviewing what we know about the benefits of compassion for the person who is suffering, for the provider of compassion, and for third parties who witness or hear about compassion at work. The heart of the article focuses on what research tells us about embedding compassion in the personal, relational, and organizational contexts in which compassion takes place. We conclude by discussing implications for practice and for the future research agenda regarding this vital interpersonal process.

Suggested Citation

Dutton, Jane and Workman, Kristina M. and Hardin, Ashley E., Compassion at Work (March 2014). Annual Review of Organizational Psychology & Organizational Behavior, Vol. 1, Issue 1, pp. 277-304, 2014, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2414414 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1146/annurev-orgpsych-031413-091221

Jane Dutton (Contact Author)

University of Michigan, Stephen M. Ross School of Business ( email )

701 Tappan Street
2014 Paton Accounting Center
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1234
United States
734-764-1376 (Phone)

Kristina M. Workman

Cornell University - School of Hotel Administration

435B Statler Hall
Ithaca, NY 14853-6902
United States

Ashley E. Hardin

University of Michigan, Stephen M. Ross School of Business

701 Tappan Street
Ann Arbor, MI MI 48109
United States

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