5 Jul 2011

Existing For Our Customers!

These are excerpts from Gurcharan Das' book 'The Elephant Paradigm'. An increasing number of businesses are focussing on other aspects and losing sight of what their core is. This article aptly addresses all those pointers:

"The only job of a business, I believe, is to create and retain customers. A successful manager has to be obsessed with satisfying customer needs. The irony is that all the money a company makes is made outside the company, and almost all the time company people spend is inside the company. Time is usually spent inside the company battling over turf, whereas spending time in the field makes one realize that the real battles are fought outside, against your competitors and winning the hearts of your customers.

Why is this so? I reason, I think, is that most of us don’t see customers when we work. We see only other employees and we get busy building empires or arguing over whose department is more important or whose office is bigger. One must ensure he/she meets the customers of the organization at least once a month. This reminds one not only who pays him/her the salary, but more payoffs are gained in terms of good ideas to improve products and services.

The greatest benefit of this belief in staying close to customers comes in R&D. When scientists regularly visit the bazaar they realize that they are not working for science but to improve the lives of ordinary people. When R&D becomes customer focussed, the rewards come in very rapidly. Little improvement in some areas – even in packaging – have a major impact in customer satisfaction and on the bottom line. Ultimately you succeed in business because you sell a product that is better than your competitor’s. If your efforts are directed at making a product better, and doing so constantly, you will win. No matter how much advertising or good marketing you may do, if your product does not deliver what it promises, you will not succeed. This very simple idea begins with the belief that we all exist for our customers."

Thus, however big one is, he always has customers somewhere. And he survives and sustains because of them. It is very important to keep that in mind and work towards better customer satisfaction. That leads to a sustainable business model and a chance to grow (in revenue, customers and customer loyalty).

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