2013-06-28, Nerijus Celkonas

First rule business should learn

First rule business should learn

A fraise „client centric“ is very popular these days. Business‘ are encouraged to consider the client‘s needs instead of their potential. Most of us remember the times when companies were (and somehow still are) managed through the resource perspective. The motto in all fields was – strictly hierarchic management, limited resources and increase in effectiveness.

This is a consequence of the Industrial Revolution. Progressive companies were implementing ISO standards, all departments and individuals had own work instructions and the whole mechanism works like clockwork (ideally). Every department or individual within an organization had its place and task (not goal) and any unusual activity had to be rejected because it doesn’t belong to him/her. This way a market of standardized products and services was born. Sales and marketing departments sold clearly defined products or services and if the client wanted something more or differently, the answer usually was – “It’s not possible”. Even an appellative term “out of box” was born.

If you noticed, most of the larger organizations still operate this way. It’s understandable, as businesses don’t know how to manage large organizations yet, apart from hierarchic or conveyer schemes. Let’s look around and try to find today’s discrepancies between consumers/business demand and supply. Will we find areas where the consumer wants one thing and the business is offering another? Usually it’s rule-based activities.

A businessman wants to do business, but the accountant says it can’t be done this way.

A businessman wants to sell, he’s told to open a company and pay taxes.

A consumer wants to buy a single piece of a good or a service, but it’s not sold this way.

In order to open a bank account or get a bank loan, heaps of papers have to be supplied.

Want debit card statement? You must call or even visit your bank.

Even the church has rules.

Standardized business is defined by rules in order to achieve higher efficiency. And this is a great time for the Y generation. Modern youngsters want everything immediately, on the spot and the way they want it, not the way businesses offer.

Now, more than ever, the gates for disruptive innovations are opening up. Do what the client wants and you’ll be the winner. This way a fraise “client centric” was born. Good salesmen know the recipe of successful sales – ask what the customer wants and you won’t have to thrust what one doesn’t need. All modern and successful companies follow this rule. Manufacture what the consumer needs instead of pushing your product through various marketing channels. But very successful companies know another secret that I’ll reveal to you. The guarantee of success in the XXI century is not thinking about your customer, but about your customer’s customer. I don’t know if we have a term for this phenomenon yet, but every salesman or marketing specialist, thinking about his/hers client’s customer, will easily sell his/hers products, as the product or service will solve his/hers client’s problems, because your client is thinking about his/hers customer, too.  Whatever you do in business, think one step ahead, that is, what’s useful for your client’s customer?

Gain or money chain always goes one-way, otherwise we wouldn’t have client-supplier relationships. Every one of us is someone’s client or supplier. We supply each other with services and at the end the chain loops and closes. Thus, there’s always someone behind your client – this is who marketing specialists and salespeople should be thinking of.

But one might argue that selling to the end customer doesn’t have a further element. That’s not true, the gain chain always has a following element and the loop always closes, otherwise the economy would stop. People always buy something  for the family or kids, at the end, even a totally isolated individual has own EGO and there’s always someone behind. If you try to understand and find this – you’ll be a leader in your field, minimum.


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