Creating Customer Value:

Customer Intimacy

Listen to Your Customers

Discovering Problems and Unsatisfying Needs

Vadim Kotelnikov personal logo Vadim Kotelnikov

Founder, Ten3 Business e-Coach Inspiration and Innovation Unlimited!

"Thanks to our customers, we turned a potentially disastrous mistake into a great opportunity."  ~ Michael Dell 

"To gain customer insights, we must understand that we are prisoners of what we know and what we believe."  ~ Mohanbir Sawhney

How To Achieve Customer Satisfaction?

The Five Rules

  • Give your customers more than they expect... More

10 Commandments of Innovation

Turn Your Customers Into Teachers: Listening Tips

By: Michael Dell

  • See the big picture. It's not enough to just respond piecemeal to your customers' problems. You've got to be willing to invest in coming up with a solution to the immediate problem and look beyond it to see its bigger potential... More

NLP Technology of Achievement

Selling with NLP: Eight Steps of Active Listening5

  • Listen to what is not said... More

The GE Leadership Effectiveness Survey (LES)

The Four Principles of Natural Selling

By: Michael Oliver

  1. The Purpose of a Business is Helping Other People Solve Their Problems.

  2. Asking the Right Types of Questions at the Right Time.

  3. Listening to What is Being Meant, Not Just What Is Being Said.

  4. Feeding Back What You Think You Heard.

 

Five Popular Innovation Myths

By Tom Peters

  • Myth Five: Customers invariably only tell you about yesterday's needs... More

Five Steps to Powerful Team Building

By Moshe Levy

  • Abandon the idea that you know it all. You don't No matter how long you've been in business, you can still learn from customers, employees, and vendors.

  • When visiting customers, listen before you sell. people want the opportunity to explain in detail what they need. And they want to know that their vendors value their input and factor it into the product or service... More

Selling (and Silence)

Customer Listening Tips

Customer Intimacy

Customer Feedback

Customer Partnership

Customer Retention

Customer Satisfaction

Measuring Client Satisfaction

Effective Listening

Active Listening

Listening to Emotions

Customer-driven Innovation

Customer-driven value innovation is  not a one-time event or a slogan, it's a philosophy and a mindset.  You should live this principle daily. Analyze customer comments to gain insight and leverage customer feedback to ensure success. Observe people, live your customers' life, watch how they use your product to learn what works and what doesn't work. Encourage experimentation and risk taking. Involve everyone. Require every person, regardless of their position to spend time on customer contact and services activities. Help your employees to understand the customer's needs by involving them in listening to customer feedback after a new product launch. Ask all your employee to get on board with customer-driven innovation. Ingrain it in your operations so deeply that is becomes a part of DNA of your company... More

Ask Searching Questions

Searching questions can help you discover new opportunities, uncover the roots of a problem, and find creative solutions to it. Ask your customer what they want and find common themes in response to your questioning.

New Technology Development: Dealing With the Fuzzy Front End

Balance customer feedback with your own understanding of the technology potential. Listen to your current customers, but don't always believe them. Often the benefits of new technology move faster than your current customers are willing to accept. Remember however that although customers can be overly conservative, technology push by itself rarely wins... More

 Case in Point  Microsoft

"Learning from mistakes and constantly improving products is a key in all successful companies. Listening to customers is a big part of that effort. You have to study what customers say about their problems with your products and stay tuned into what they want, extrapolating from leading-edge buyers to predict future requirements," says Bill Gates, the Founder of Microsoft.

 Case in Point  Dell Inc.

Michael Dell founded Dell Computer Corporation I spend about 40% of my time with customers," says Michael Dell.4 "When you're running a company, or even a group, there are lots of ways to spend your day. But to me, there's nothing more redeeming or refreshing than spending time with customers. I ask lots of questions, like: "Are we doing a good job? How do you like our products? Our service?" If it's a global company that operates in many places around the world, I ask, "How well are we serving you outside this country? Are there opportunities for improvement? Is our team taking good care of you? What are you looking to accomplish in your company that we can help you with?" I want to hear the truth and walk away with a list of ideas about how we can work to make a valued partnership that much more significant."... More

 Case in Point  Procter & Gamble

At Procter & Gamble, branding is almost everything. In the age of the Web, P&G turned the Internet into a device for listening to customers – and for experimenting with its brands. "We've been voted the best marketer of the 20th century," says Greg Icenhower, an associate director of corporate communications at P&G, referring to a ranking published by Advertising Age magazine. "But that's because we were the biggest shouters. In the 21st century, we want to be the best listeners."... More

 Case in Point  Charles Schwab

Dave Pottruck, co-CEO of Charles Schwab, says that most of Schwab's huge innovations have come from asking customers questions:

  • What can we do better?

  • How can we make your life easier?

  • What new service or product would you like to see us offering?... More

 Case in Point  Fidelity Investments

Fidelity Investments leverages the fact that it has thousands of representatives on the phone every day talking with customers – and getting good ideas from them. Through a system called Value Network, Fidelity gives its phone representatives a tool for providing the organization with unsolicited customer feedback. Representatives are encouraged, but not required, to submit issues they recognize as relevant by recording customer suggestions and requests into a central voice-mailbox. These comments are transcribed and passed along to the managers responsible for various aspects of Fidelity's service. The transcriptions are also analyzed by a central quality staff and discussed at monthly executive meetings to make decisions about improvements that cut across functional and organizational lines.... More

 Case in Point  Burger King Shocks Customers: No More Whoppers

Customers surveys, focus groups and sales data can tell you some things about what customers think of your product. But how do you really gauge how deeply your customers care about it? Burger King’s answer was to take that product away... More

 

 

 

References:

  1. "Extreme Management", Mark Stevens

  2. "Don't Shout, Listen," Fara Warner

  3. "Direct from Dell", Michael Dell with Catherine Fredman

  4. "Natural Selling," Michael Oliver

  5. "Selling with NLP", Kerry L. Johnson