Prior work has identified the importance of empathy and the effect on design outcomes such as increased quality, originality, and usability. The measurement of empathy in the context of design, however, remains a pervasive issue. While several studies have proposed interventions, tools or methods to enhance designers’ empathy, it remains unclear how managers or designers can practically measure empathic abilities. Many of the existing methods are either incredibly time-consuming and thus not feasible in design practice or are not grounded in design work, making the translation and interpretation of instruments or surveys challenging. To address this gap, we study preference accuracy as a measure of empathic ability, and investigate its relationship with design outcomes, specifically user satisfaction. We review a case study implementing this method; fourteen participants were recruited and randomly paired with a partner. Individuals were tasked with designing a chair to meet their partner’s needs. Each participant interviewed their partner and completed two preference assessments: one detailing their own design preferences, and one detailing their perceptions of their partner’s design preferences. To calculate preference accuracy, the preference assessments for each participant were compared. Results from this study suggest preference accuracy may not be linked with user satisfaction, but may be a useful tool to differentiate empathic abilities across a population of designers.