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  1. # Gear Up PreWork Assignment
  2. ### Brandon Cunningham
  4. What role does empathy play in your life and how has it helped you?
  6.   Empathy helps me understand how others might feel about something - That is: what is their perspective or way they might look at something?
  7.   It has helped me in my career and personal life by understanding that others perceive things differently than me.
  10. How does empathy help you build better software?
  12.   By understanding the emotional needs and wants of users we can know:  
  14.   + What pains and gains they're trying to address and why.
  16.   + What the best workflow and design would be to create the optimal UX for them.
  19. Why is empathy important for working on a team?
  21.   It keeps you from falling into preconceived notions and assumptions about others.
  22.   If you can at least understand how someone feels about a situation (despite what might seem logical to you)
  23.   it can help immensely in working together and having a mutual understandng of what goals and mission are.
  26. Describe a situation in which your ability to empathize with a colleague or teammate was helpful.
  28.    Numerous times in big bike races.  Often, particularly in a stage race, you end up helping the leader on your team (the person with the highest general classification).  A few days in that person is often hurting really bad and struggling on stages that are not their strengths.  You have to really empathize with what they're going through physically, and even more so emotionally, to effectively help them through those stages that might be relatively much more doable for you (due to terrain or your own freshness as well as their stress and anxiety levels etc.).
  31. When do you find it most difficult to be empathetic in professional settings? How can you improve your skills when faced with these scenarios?
  33.    I have a very hard time empathizing with anyone that I perceive to be taking advantage of others or coercively using their authority inappropriately.  However, there are times when I don't know the whole story and need to be careful not to prematurely judge or assume I have full information.  Slowing things down, particularly on my own personal reaction, is a good strategy to remember and adhere to.
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