I asserted in my last post that many if not most organisations working on customer initiatives are blind to the obvious. What specifically do I mean?
Organisations of all kinds (including businesses) are blind to the need to rethink and redesign the deep structure of the organisational operating system. A deep structure that is brilliantly designed for the 20th Century (to push out and push on to customers the products and services that the organisation has produced) and totally inadequate for the needs of today. A structure which encourages substantial investments in marketing and sales to ‘conquest’ customers whilst simultaneously insisting that every effort is made to cut the operating costs associated with supporting these ‘conquests’ in their post-purchase needs – cuts in customer service, field service, technical support. A structure in which the right mind does not talk with the left – where Marketing is making x-sell and up-sell offers to customers who have already made complaints to Customer Services. A structure where there is talk of customer relationships and customer loyalty (which require a long-term play) yet the focus of effort is to do whatever it takes to make the revenue and profit numbers today. A structure which spends millions on CRM projects whose impact – on the whole is – customer alienation and higher customer dissatisfaction. A structure which rests on deception: making a set of promises (to the customer) that the organisation knows that it is unable and/or unwilling to deliver. A structure that encourages keeping the customer at a distance and thus discourages any form of authentic customer engagement lest that customer see behind the veil of the story that the organisation tells to outsiders.
I will look at another perspective on being ‘Blind to the obvious’ in my next post.