The Power of Empathy: Key Lessons from Refael Edry’s Life for All Entrepreneurs

What’s the most essential skill for an entrepreneur? If you’re like most people, your mind has already started listing traits like critical thinking, decision-making, determination, and diligence. But even the most dedicated and hard-working entrepreneurs can fail to accomplish their goals in the absence of empathy.

Simply put, empathy is your ability to put yourself in someone else’s shoes and relate to their aspirations and pain points. As an entrepreneur, it’s crucial that you empathize with those around you, from business partners and employees to customers.

While there’s no one-size-fits-all formula to becoming more empathetic, you can take inspiration from Refael (aka Rafi) Edry, an eminent businessman from Israel.

A Life of Ups and Downs: Refael Edry’s Inspiring Story

Born in Safed, Rafi Edry is the eldest of three brothers. His parents named him after his heroic uncle, Refael Edry z|l, a freedom fighter who sacrificed his life for Israel’s freedom. Stories of his courage and devotion to his fellow countrymen have been inspiring his nephew since childhood.

Growing up amidst financial hardships, Refael Edry (the nephew) realized early on that he had to start working to support his family. But that never stopped him from working toward his dream of building a better life. Today, he runs various profitable companies in Africa and Israel with his brothers, Eyal Edry and Moshe Edree.

As a successful business owner, Refael Edry can choose to live a cushy and luxurious life. But he knows that thousands of children in Israel’s rural periphery continue to deal with the same problems he faced as a child. The thought of depriving these children of a brighter future due to a lack of financial resources and opportunities didn’t sit well with him.

That’s what compelled him to partner with his brothers and start the Ahinoam Association for the Promotion of Equal Opportunities. The non-profit organization runs several welfare initiatives, including mentoring programs and scholarships, to support the youth in Israel’s periphery. You can read more about these activities organized by Refael Edry on Gisuser.

The volunteers work with at-risk youth to help them pursue higher education and find their footing in the job market. Also, they work on various peripheral development projects to improve the infrastructure of welfare institutions.

The common thread among all these endeavors is philanthropist Refael Edry’s empathy for children from impoverished backgrounds. He understands their plight and has devoted his life to their upliftment.

Lessons for Entrepreneurs

Refael Edry’s social endeavors demonstrate the importance of empathy in today’s world. As an entrepreneur, you need the same quality to connect with the people around you and build a thriving business.

Whether brainstorming a new product idea or onboarding new employees, empathy is crucial for your success. Let’s say you’re developing a new product. It’ll strike a chord with your target customers only when it resolves their problems. That highlights the need for you to have a thorough understanding of their pain points, which, in turn, requires empathy.

Similarly, if you want to build a driven and passionate workforce, you must first identify the challenges your employees are facing in their professional and personal lives. Understand whether they have additional responsibilities at home that might interfere with their work. Find out whether they’re feeling overworked or burnt out.

The key is to think of your employees as more than resources that get the job done. Treat them as people with real emotions and problems and provide them with whatever they need to work comfortably. It’ll motivate them to give their best and believe in your vision for the future.

Empathy is just as crucial for the successful implementation of marketing campaigns. Whether creating an Instagram Reel or a Facebook ad, avoid promotional messaging. Instead, you must make an effort to connect with your target audience and address their needs. It’ll position your company as one that values its people and strengthen your brand identity.

Final Thoughts

Refael Edry’s endeavors have shown that being empathetic isn’t rocket science. Instead, you have to make an effort to stay connected with your roots. In other words, you must remember where you came from and the challenges you had to overcome to build the life you have today.

It’ll help you relate to the struggles of your employees and customers even when you’ve achieved massive success. That, in turn, will help you build a better workplace culture and create products/services that provide value to your customers. Ultimately, it’ll take your business to the next level and develop a strong brand image.