Dr. Andrea Hollingsworth
Hollingsworth Consulting

It’s tough out there.

Research shows much of the U.S. workforce feels demoralized and frustrated. There’s toxicity, burnout, and quiet quitting. There’s depression, anxiety, and isolation. Working people are in pain. 

Organizational leaders care deeply about these problems, and they’ve worked hard to enact policy-based solutions. They’ve contracted therapists or coaches to work with stressed employees. They’ve upped wages. They’ve increased supports for physical wellness. They’ve scheduled more DEI trainings, more professional certification trainings, more cornhole tournaments, more zoom parties. They’ve worked to provide reasonable accommodations for employees suffering with mental illness. They’ve revisited sick leave policies, and paid time off policies, and work from home policies. The list goes on.

It can be so frustrating when it seems like nothing is working. Company leaders genuinely want to improve worker wellness and morale, but the problems persist. Why?

Policy-based solutions are necessary, but not sufficient.

Do organizations need policy-based structures, and trainings, and supports, and events, and accommodations? Yes, of course. Is there a time and place for bringing in contracted psychotherapists to support your employees? Yes, of course.

But those measures might not be enough to improve morale. Why? Because they don’t address the underlying issue, which has to do with the relational and emotional culture within the workplace.

Often, when workplace negativity persists, two things are going on.

First, there are often problems with the relationships employees have within and toward themselves. For instance, people may lack internal skills around self-awareness, self-compassion, self-motivation, self-regulation, and self-respect.

Second, there are often problems with the relationships between employees. People fail to embrace the qualities needed for a healthy and supportive work environment—like noticing, empathizing, connecting, caring, advocating, encouraging, and mentoring. 

Relational Problems Require Relational Solutions.

I believe what’s needed is to improve the quality of the connections within and between people – especially when it comes to leadership. Leaders set emotion norms. This means that it’s essential to provide them with tools and skills for stronger, more caring connections with those they lead.

First, leaders need resources to better connect with and emotionally support themselves.

At the same time, they need tools with which to better connect with and emotionally support team members who may feel isolated, frustrated, numb, hopeless, overwhelmed, or simply alone.

By infusing emotional and relational wellness into the organization’s leadership base, the emotional tone begins to shift. Positive morale is restored because people start to trust each other and feel truly supported. Changes in performance, productivity, retention, wellness, and overall employee satisfaction naturally follow.

I feel honored to help provide these skills and tools for today’s leaders. As an experienced, master’s level psychotherapist, I know how to help people find healthier ways of relating to themselves and others. As a seasoned, doctoral-level researcher and writer on human emotional and relational health, I understand what’s needed to move the leadership needle in the direction of positive change. As a clear, engaging, and well-versed educator and speaker, I’m confident in my ability to teach and inspire.

Most of all: My heart is large. My spine is strong.  And my vision is full of confident hope for healed and refreshed leaders, teams, and organizations. 

About Andrea

Dr. Andrea Hollingsworth is Founder and CEO of Hollingsworth Consulting, author of the bestselling book The Compassion Advantage (2024), and one of today’s leading global experts on compassionate leadership. Since 2008, she has been studying, speaking, and writing about the science and spirituality of human emotions and relationships. Her articles have been published more than a dozen times in peer-reviewed journals, and she has taught at prestigious institutions like Princeton, Boston University, and Loyola University Chicago. In addition, Dr. Andrea has delivered talks to audiences at some of the top-ranked universities in the world—including Cambridge University in England and Heidelberg University in Germany.

Dr. Andrea spends most of her time inspiring leaders and teams to use The Compassion Advantage to build supercharged organizations through cultures of care— especially in times of challenge and change. Andrea lives with her family in Minnesota where she cheers hard at her son’s soccer games and relishes every opportunity to visit the north shore of Lake Superior.