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An unconventional asset: The reasons why you should hire a highly sensitive person

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Why on earth would you even consider hiring a highly sensitive person for your team? Are they worth the “trouble”?

Let us take a moment to tell you why you should seriously consider hiring such people. Hiring the right person for a job can have a huge impact on your team and organization, and hiring someone with a high sensitivity level can open up new areas of possibilities and benefits that other candidates simply can’t offer.

From their sensitiveness to their motivation and dedication, these people have much more to offer than what meets the eye. Let’s dive in!

What is a highly sensitive person (HSP)?

Are you an employer in need of an unconventional human asset?

One who understands the subtleties of any working environment and can connect to the feelings of those around them? Consider hiring a highly sensitive person (HSP).

What is a highly sensitive person? They are individuals who tend to be deeply moved by the emotions around them and are more aware of subtleties than others. HSPs can often sense what’s going on with people before they even speak up.

This awareness allows them to be sensitized to how their team members or customers may be feeling, and therefore able to make better decisions. In addition, HSPs are highly adept at noticing patterns in data and then connecting that data to what they pick up emotionally. Their decisions come from a deeper place of understanding and empathy.

Benefits of having an HSP on your team
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When it comes to hiring, it pays to consider people with a little something extra.

HSPs bring some unique advantages to the table that can make them the highest performers on your team.

Just think of all the benefits you will get with an HSP on board:

  • They have sophisticated people skills—they intuitively understand how to make individuals feel heard and cared for, so interpersonal relationships can develop more easily.
  • They are empathetic—they take into account other people’s feelings and use those insights when communicating with others.
  • They bring a creative, curious mindset to their work—HSPs have an eye for detail and think outside the box when it comes to problem-solving.
  • They are highly tuned into their environment—paying close attention to changes in atmosphere, mood, and culture to create a better working environment for everyone.

By considering highly sensitive candidates as part of your recruitment process, you will be able to benefit from these qualities and gain a valuable asset for your team.

Challenges when managing highly sensitive people

You may find yourself wondering—are highly sensitive people tough to handle? That’s a fair question.

The fact of the matter is, managing and working with highly sensitive people can be challenging if you’re not prepared.

For one, highly sensitive people tend to be overwhelmed by too much stimulation in the workplace. Too much sound, smell, or intensity of interaction can lead to stress and ultimately result in decreased performance. HR managers and bosses need to take this into account when managing HSPs.

Strategies to assist HSPs in the workplace
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When you hire an HSP for your team, you needn’t worry—there are a few strategies that are easy to implement to help them succeed and boost morale in the workplace.

  • Abort your open office plan

The first step is to consider whether an open office plan is the best fit for the workplace.

While it may be the norm, it can be difficult for HSPs to thrive in this kind of environment since too much noise and too many distractions can cause them to become overwhelmed or anxious.

When considering hiring an HSP, make sure you have safe, quiet spaces away from the noise for them to work.

  • Don’t criticize them upfront

HSPs may take feedback differently than what you expect from someone else on your team because they tend to process information deeply and intensely.

Whenever you provide feedback on their work, be mindful of their needs and make sure they understand it’s just constructive criticism—not a personal attack.

This will help prevent feelings of hurt or resentment that could stem from bluntness or misunderstanding later down the line.

  • Look for opportunities to help HSP employees apply their empathy skills

One thing HSPs are often great at is empathizing with people—so look for opportunities where they can bring it into the workplace and apply it in useful ways.

For example, having conversations with customers or meeting with vendors for project management roles are great ways for HSP employees to demonstrate their empathy skills while also proving themselves valuable within your organization.

As we close, know that while there may be challenges in managing highly sensitive individuals, they also come with significant benefits. Not only are they able to pick up on subtleties and nuances that other people might miss, but they are also able to bring a creative, open-minded, and emotionally aware approach to your team. Highly sensitive people can be a valuable asset to any organization and should not be discounted.

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