Depends on your goals
If you're a humane manager who wants happy, loyal, hardworking employees, empathy, give-and-take and honesty are the best way. Then criticism is easier to take, if not to give. If you don't really care about that, since all employees are replaceable, including yourself, then empathy would be an unnecessary complication. And of course, if your goal is to drive an employee out, then you may wish to employ negative empathy, or use empathy to elicit responses that could be used against the employee.
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