Overwhelmingly, empathy is a skill. We have to practice it; it’s a choice.
We need to start feeling empathy for these teams and treating their work as valid — as valid as engineering work. For instance, in the case of Sales, often they’ll have a quota they have to hit, else they literally lose their jobs. It’s an incredibly high-stakes profession. As engineers, we won’t be fired for building fewer features; in fact, we’ll probably be promoted if we manage to simplify the feature-set.
This article is extensive and thorough in covering the various methods of applying empathy for customers, coworkers, and ourselves. Bonus points for the wonderful use of gifs.