Reinventing Industries on a Global Stage
This isn’t your father’s business environment
The days of the 100-year-old company are over. Sure, some company names from the last century will still be recognizable. And values such as customer service, honesty, and integrity will never go out of style. But look closer at the most successful businesses in today’s environment, and you will see organizations that are constantly finding ways to reinvent themselves. Redefining standard operating procedures and practices. Changing the ways they engage customers. Improving how they add value through the products and services they offer. Everything.
Change is not surprising
Today’s businesses operate in the sort of dynamic environment not seen since the first industrial revolution. In fact, in most expert opinions, the pace of change today far outweighs anything our ancestors experienced. However, in addition to the speed of change, organizations also face a number of other challenging market dynamics including:
Hyper-informed (and sometimes misinformed) customers. With so much publicly available information on the Internet, customers have access to an almost unlimited supply of facts and opinions about their purchase decisions. By the time they engage your sales force, many buyers already have a pretty good idea of what a “solution” looks like.
Shrinking margins. The Internet also gives these buyers access to far more options than ever before. For example, the buyer of a common household appliance such as a dishwasher can go to the local showroom, buy online from a manufacturer, buy from a wholesaler half a world away, or even buy from a public auction site like eBay. The sheer number of options has put sellers under incredible price pressures.
Focus on experience. Regardless of the industry, the number of options has also increased the attention on the buyer’s experience. Don’t like the ambiance of a certain store? There’s an online retailer who can get it to you overnight. Is that supplier hard to work with and unreliable? There’s a guy in Australia who can get the parts to you on time and for less. Tired of sitting for a half hour in your underwear, waiting for the doctor to finally show up? There’s a boutique clinic down the street that respects your dignity and your busy schedule.
Focus on outcomes. The heart patient doesn’t buy angioplasty; they buy a cleared artery. The homeowner doesn’t buy a washing machine; they buy cleaned clothes. Gone are the days when buyers had to trust that products lived up to their promises. Now, with just a few clicks, they can access opinions from other buyers who have traveled the same road. Improved outcomes are becoming even more of a mandate in industries like healthcare due to rising costs and the demand for