Are you pretending to listen to your customers?

Customers continuously report how they are stressed by and overloaded with information. Yet, the very companies who are seeking to simplify complexity are often the perpetrators of it.

Just as we are getting used to the functionality and icons of our latest smart phone, or gadget, lo and behold there’s yet another upgrade we have to educate ourselves around.

Typically there is an on-going battle between the people who want to ‘push’ products onto their customers and those who want to deliver what their clients actually want. Those of us who are constantly upgrading software and operating systems are all too familiar with the result.

The fact is a product department or R&D department is designed to create product so that’s what they will spend their time doing. And if they aren’t developing something from scratch, they are ‘enhancing’ what has gone before.

The fact is, you are never going to satisfy everyone. There is no point offering extra bells and whistles to customers when you aren’t managing their minimum requirements. What is needed is a radical focus on those customers with whom you can have a mutually beneficial exchange. The 80/20 rule is a good way to start clearing the decks.

When companies spend less time inventing more ‘stuff’ and more time really listening to their customers they can start to deliver the basic levels of service people actually want.

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