At the end of my session Friday, the group asked if I had any final words of wisdom. I like to respond to those requests, even though I don’t have a “stock” answer prepared ahead of time. And although I didn’t make the connection as I was saying it, what I came up with is also relevant to yesterday’s MLK day.

I encouraged people in the group to have compassion. Have compassion for other people when they drive you crazy in a conflict situation. Have compassion for yourself when you know the right conflict resolution skills, but fail to practice them in the heat of the moment. Have compassion for your employees who haven’t been around the block enough to know that what they are doing won’t work. Have compassion for yourself when you notice that you are micromanaging.

If you give yourself and others just a little bit of room, a little bit of space to be who they (and you) are—instead of obsessing over your judgment about how wrong either they or you are—then I think we’ll make much more progress than we are now.