The ability to share someone else's feelings or experiences by imagining what it would be like to be in that person's situation


Level 1

Able to, on a basic level, understand and build on the viewpoints of others

  • Understanding others: You listen in conversations with others, and respect and acknowledge their viewpoints.

  • Mediation and facilitation: You're attentive and thoughtful when peers present human challenges to you.

  • Pastoral care: You can give several examples of times that you have helped others in your immediate team with problems they're facing.

Level 2

Constantly pushes for a better understanding of the needs and perspectives of those outside their own viewpoint.

  • Understanding others: You regularly and actively ask others for their opinions with the goal of better understanding where they're coming from.

  • Mediation and facilitation: You have de-escalated disagreements amongst your peers, looking for common ground.

  • Pastoral care: You've proactively developed at least one informal mentoring relationship through your ability to understand a peer or subordinate.

Level 3

A great person to have in any room. Trusted by peers and their team. Can take any problem team and help them drive in the same direction.

  • Understanding others: You are able to recognise bias in others and help them to see their peers, customers or stakeholders through fresh eyes. You can point to times when you've used this to improve an outcome.

  • Mediation and facilitation: You have examples of helping teams within your organisation to get closer to each other and understand viewpoints, through workshops and conversations.

  • Pastoral care: You've proactively developed multiple informal or formal mentoring relationship through your ability to understand a peer or subordinate.

Level 4

Often found advocating for and representing others in conversations they cannot be in. Helps leaders to understand their teams, users and clients.

  • Understanding others: You're called for when any team wants to understand a group of people better. You can point to ways in which you've actively looked to dramatically improve the empathy of your organisation.

  • Mediation and facilitation: You're called on to facilitate groups of people, often outside your peers, due to your calm and thoughtful demeanour. You make even combative people feel calm through finding common ground.

  • Pastoral care: You have several formal mentoring relationships with senior staff both within and outside your immediate team.

Level 5

Naturally a great peer and advisor to everyone in the organisation, to the very highest level. Knows people better than they know themselves. A gut instinct for resolving conflict helping others understand each other better.

  • Understanding others: Business-wide you're known as the voice of the customer, the staff, or at least one other major stakeholder. You represent the viewpoints of large groups of people externally, working to break down assumptions and stereotypes.

  • Mediation and facilitation: You have a proven ability to guide and strengthen underperforming organisations through existential alignment issues. Your reputation as a facilitator and internal empathiser is second to none.

  • Pastoral care: You can give multiple examples of being personally trusted by the highest levels of the organisation to advise candidly about where they're missing human understanding or advise on strategy where it affects people.

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