Over the last year or two, I have often heard a word used in the DevOps community not usually uttered in IT circles. In fact, outside of the psychology and counseling communities, I don’t hear the word much at all. That word is “empathy”. And the more I learn about DevOps, the more I believe empathy may be the single best tool there is for building bridges and collaboration across boundaries — job #1 when considering a move to DevOps. Using empathy is better than any process, organizational redesign, or automation initiative. Empathy has tremendous power to improve any relationship that matters to you — personal and professional. Whether you’re Dev working with Ops, Ops working with Dev, IT with “the business”, or a parent with your child, everything seems to work better with a healthy dose of empathy thrown into the mix.