Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Leaders should connect with customers

It seems like a no-brainer, but I still encounter many leaders who are ‘jailed’ in conference rooms and hardly ever see a real customer.

Yesterday I was playing golf and the director of the course passed us by in a buggy. You could tell that it was even hard for him to say hello. He made sure that there was enough distance so we could not talk.
However, this was an excellent opportunity for him to ask us how we (the customers!) were doing and maybe even ask whether we had some suggestions for improvement. It was not busy, so he could have easily done this. The response from my golf-buddy was that this director clearly doesn’t understand his business.

Instead of creating goodwill and receiving valuable feedback, the director ‘escaped’ and left us with a rather negative impression.
A missed chance for learning, connecting and building a true relationship with your customers.

Are you, as a leader, meeting directly with customers on a weekly basis?

Enthusiasm drives Excellence!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Are your products and services globally available?

Last week I wanted to buy an album from Ana Tijoux, as a MP3 file. So, I did go to the Apple iTunes store in The Netherlands. However that album was not available there. Then I did go to the iTunes store in the US. They did have the album, but I couldn’t buy it because I have no bank account in the US. That was also the limitation while trying to use my credit card.
Then I did go to Amazon in the US and there was the same story. The album was available but I could only buy it with a US based bank account.

A year ago, I did read about the fact that you could use your American Express membership rewards points to get books from Amazon. I thought that was a super deal, so I immediately tried to use my points and exchange them for books. I won’t bother you with the nuisance; but is took me and their customer service staff several weeks, to find out that this program was only available in the US.

This shows that even these well-known global companies are not truly global in their operations yet. That is because they started in the US and then expanded (country by country) abroad.
This opens opportunities for companies who are really global right from the design, right from the start. There are also these new crypto-currencies available, which should make it possible and easy.

Enthusiasm drives Excellence!