The single most important attribute for leadership today is empathy. Above all other skills empathy will lead to employee engagement, customer retention, effective marketing campaigns, higher-quality and a consistently better financial statement.
Empathy is the ability to get yourself into the head of another person to relate to their hopes and dreams, insecurities, the problems distracting them from life as they choose to live it and the solutions they perceive will connect them to improvement.
Once you are able to understand the thoughts and feelings of others you stand a much better chance of satisfying the needs they have for buying a product were continuing to give their best efforts while working for you.
Empathy hinges on being able to make the other person feel appreciated and secure in the relationship with you and in their life in general. It is these two motivational factors that are present in each person – the need for acceptance and the need for security.
Unfortunately empathy cannot be easily learned. Often it takes a personal situation that is filled with tragedy before one can begin to understand how to empathize with others. For example, someone who has lost a child or parent will find comfort from others who have survived similar situations. It is at these times they will see the true value of empathy.