How To Respond To Someone Who Is Crying At Work

How To Respond To Someone Who Is Crying At Work

  • February 18, 2022

It may feel uncomfortable for you to comfort a crying employee or colleague, but I want you to remember that we don’t leave our humanity at the door…⁣

Crying is a biological reaction to stress and there are a million better ways for you to support your people than to say “stop crying”. or ”do you need a minute”?


Instead, try these six responses:

  • Let’s pause for a moment here, I can see you’re crying…
  • I get this is hard for you…
  • It’s okay to cry…
  • You don’t have to say anything more…
  • I’m here for you…
  • Do you want to talk about it?


I used to be the worst for dealing with criers at the early stages of my leadership career. I would always tell them to leave the room and come back when they’re ready…That’s an awful experience for anyone to live through.

Yes – sometimes the employee may want to leave the room to be alone, but you ask them if that’s what they want. They might genuinely need your support, so sending them away because you’re uncomfortable is not a solution!


Office tears are nothing to be embarrassed about. It’s not unprofessional and it’s not a weakness. It’s an emotion that can be managed through empathy.



Written by Sahar Habib⁣
Founder of Coach Wilson