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Customer Care

First or Second?

By on August 22, 2012

Which phrase is correct—customers or employees first? When employees know that they can act on behalf of the customer, they are happy and are driven to develop creative ideas that customer will value. The customer comes first, but employees follow along naturally when they have the freedom to do the right thing for those customers.

Customer 3D and Disappearing Problems

By on March 21, 2012

Customer 3D solves problems, but not in the ways you might expect. Becoming customer-centered weaves a single worldview through the fabric of the organization. It's amazing how many other internal issues get resolved when the customer is your first priority.

The Customer’s Customer

By on March 2, 2011

Solution-selling must be customer-centered. In order to be successful, it must make the primary customer’s product better in the eyes of the secondary customer. It has to be focused on the customer’s customer.

Getting Past Task-Oriented Behavior

By on September 1, 2010

Educate task-oriented employees by demonstrating what a customer-centered culture would do. Then, measure the progress of the organization in galvanizing these new customer behaviors.

Customers Who Tolerate Us

By on August 4, 2010

“Because customers tolerate it” is no longer an acceptable reason in any forward-thinking organization. It is one thing to talk about customer care; it is a completely different approach to share the journey with those customers by providing them with what they need and expect.

Customer-Centricity: Two Meanings

By on July 28, 2010

A culture of giving which brings what Seth Godin calls “gifts that touch us, gifts that change us” to customers will place those organizations at the center of their customers’ universe.

Viewing Jobs Differently

By on April 28, 2010

Customer-centricity simply doesn’t happen without deeply caring employees who are encouraged to innovate for their customers. It cannot be mandated. It needs to be cultural. They have to feel they are part of building something that is purposeful.

Two Ways to Innovate

By on April 21, 2010

Innovation happens when organizations think like their customers. The approach should be built on the goal of making the exception the rule. Organizations should constantly be looking for a better way to accomplish what they are doing. And it should always be based on the real-world needs of the customer.

Customer-Centered Decision Trees

By on January 20, 2010

Default procedures offer companies the chance to save their customers time and money, and help them maneuver through complexity. In every process, however, leaders should imagine themselves in the shoes of the people they serve.

Customer Complacency

By on November 11, 2009

The status quo is a funny concept. It is comforting and familiar, of course. In many cases, unfortunately, we are lulled into accepting what exists today and not realizing how much better it could be. We don't need to change the status quo every time. However, we need to challenge the status quo every time. […]

The Multiplier Effect (Part II)

By on August 5, 2009

It is fantastic news that great performance, grounded in being customer-centered, is available for every business if it wants it. It grows out of deliberate practice and design of an organization-wide culture to improve on behalf of your customers. There is another dimension of the multiplier effect that will add even more to your image […]

The Multiplier Effect (Part I)

By on August 5, 2009

The more you do something, the better you get at it. We are familiar with this concept in sports and music, because the more you practice, the better you become. The same thing applies in leading your organization to become more customer-centered. In economics, a multiplier effect describes the degree of change in one variable […]

Customer Excellence as a Way of Life

By on April 1, 2009

Successful companies have an excellence quotient that they never compromise. The secret, however, is not in products and marketing. The secret is in creating this excellence from the viewpoint of the customer, because that is who will ultimately be the judge of whether they deserve that high status. The secret is in becoming customer-centered. One […]

The Year of the Customer

By on December 31, 2008

As we are about to begin a new year, please let me assure you that I am just kidding with the title of this post. Isn't it somewhat presumptuous to announce just one year for customers, when every day and every year should be devoted to them? It also makes you wonder what the other years […]

Customer Details

By on November 26, 2008

Customer focus does not happen offhandedly. It requires leadership and emphasis on details to stay effective. Many organizations fail or drift because they believe it is easy, they take it for granted and they don't deliver the concentrated efforts needed to be successful. Donald Keough, who was President and COO of Coca-Cola Company at the […]

Inspire Your Customers

By on October 29, 2008

It is much better to have inspired customers than simply satisfied ones. Metroparks of the Toledo (OH) Area understands this relationship with its customers extremely well. It has a Board of Directors' mandate to preserve land, so if the organization has $1 left to spend, that's where it is invested. Yet customers may not always […]

Customer Camaraderie

By on October 9, 2008

  When customers are suffering though really poor performance from an organization from whom they are buying a service, it unites them in a unique kind of camaraderie. Today is the six-month anniversary of the US Airways incident described in my October 8th post. This article is a tribute to Sonita, Marty, Evan, Samuel and […]

Seamless Customer Care

By on October 8, 2008

Mercedes-Benz has a captivating ad that says "Most people will never need ____, but we build it in anyway". The company inserts various features in the tagline, identifying aspects of their cars that differentiate them. This phrase also illustrates a fundamental concept for all organizations that want to outperform for their customers: Make sure that […]