Implementing an empathy program is not just about people gathering in a circle and talking about their feelings–it is a valuable tool. In an article for Business 2 Community, Beth Kuhel explores the power of empathy in business growth and career growth.
In Tune with Challenges
Who are the employees who consistently receive promotions or salary raises? The employees who are in tune with what their boss desires. They are able to fulfill their leader’s needs with results that are seen as invaluable to their boss. This requires a certain level of empathy. Employees who are able to successfully engage in these behaviors are on the fast track to a leadership role, because they are able to gauge the needs of anyone they interact with at an emotional level.
The “milkshake model” is the perfect illustration to understand why empathy is such an important benefit. In this example, a fast food restaurant was seeking to improve milkshake sales, and after surveying customers and altering their approach to serving milkshakes, they were in dismay to find sales had not improved. A researcher studied the sales and analyzed who was buying the milkshakes and when, only to discover that over 40 percent of sales were occurring in the morning. Upon interviewing the patrons, the researcher discovered that the morning commuters bought the milkshake because their drives were lengthy and they more or less wanted something easy to consume to keep them distracted. After discovering this, the restaurant adapted their milkshakes to make them thicker; they now lasted longer for the morning commuters to enjoy them.
There are a plethora of companies who have been successful at assessing and acknowledging their customer needs; look no further than Disney or FedEx. The ability to see what is happening in the world allows for empathetic leaders to better find new opportunities and succeed more quickly than competitors. Engage in active listening and begin fully understanding what the customer is saying.
If you want a competitive edge, look towards leadership that embodies understanding. You can read the original article here: http://www.business2community.com/leadership/one-trait-that-gets-them-noticed-for-leadership-roles-01361762#Q7iuGjEXZRMLypyk.97