Every day, without us realizing, we are faced with many situations where we have the choice to be right or to be kind. You point out things your friends could have done differently. You tell a colleague they made a mistake. You stress on how wrong your mother is when she is trying to voice her opinion. Through all of these, you are driven by the strong notion of being right. You feel it deeply, and it pushes you to make your point. But is it necessary?
Given a choice, would you be correct or kind? I was curious to know what all of you thought, and I put this question out on a poll.
The overriding answer was that 53.8% of you preferred kindness over correctness. Perhaps, given the uncertain times we are facing right now, kindness is really the only social security we have, depending on each other to help each other out. And the reasons for kindness were fascinating.
In a workplace environment where the pressure is high to prove yourself, it might feel natural to favour correctness. And there are many reasons to do so.
True. No one likes to be wrong. And as we move through life, being correct might be about maintaining our confidence and belief in ourselves every single day. In the startup world, this can be relatable to entrepreneurs who need to be deeply secure about themselves to create real value and build high-velocity businesses. And this depends on the correctness of their outlook and decisions. But does it mean it’s a dark world where there is no place for kindness? Quite the opposite.
Where kindness meets correctness
According to some of you, balancing kindness with correctness is important. Say the “correct things kindly and with humanity,” as one the respondents said, adding that “it would be more helpful to the recipient to hear the truth.”
I received some wonderful insights and thoughts from all those who participated in the poll. Over the years, I have come to believe that qualities such as empathy and compassion have a major role to play, not just in our personal lives, but also in our professional lives. I have always stressed the importance of EQ for leadership. Non-verbal cues, our tone, and heightened self-awareness are necessary when navigating tough situations and conversations with anyone, be it employees, colleagues or loved ones.
Kindness is an important subset of the qualities that make up an emotionally aware individual. We all have our beliefs, and there is no reason why we shouldn’t stand by our views with passion, courage, and conviction. But how we treat those who may oppose those beliefs forms a big part of our emotional makeup. In listening and being kind, we can demonstrate that it’s right to be correct but also, and perhaps, more important, right in being kind.
Disclaimer: Views represented in this blog are personal and belong solely to the author and do not represent the views of Kstart or Kalaari.