Making Customers Matter

Harvard Business Press
Free sample

Learn how the most accomplished leaders from around the globe have tackled their toughest challenges with Lessons Learned.

Concise and engaging, each volume in this book series offers fourteen insightful essays by top leaders in industry, the public sector, and academia on the most pressing issues they've faced. The Lessons Learned series also offers all of the lessons in their original video format, free bonus videos, and other exclusive features online.

A crucial resource for today's busy executive, Lessons Learned gives you instant access to the wisdom and expertise of the world's most talented leaders.

FEATURING INTERVIEWS WITH:

William Johnson, H.J. Heinz Company
Paul Skinner, Shell Oil Products Company
William Lamar, Jr., McDonald's USA
Jeb Dasteel, Oracle
And other top business leaders
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Additional Information

Publisher
Harvard Business Press
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Published on
May 19, 2010
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Pages
112
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ISBN
9781422162118
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Best For
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Language
English
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Genres
Business & Economics / Management
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Reading information

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Times have changed.

Long gone are our days of being kings of the manufacturing industry, we are now immersed in the world of ‘service’ where the relationship between an organization and the customer is an integral part of the "product" offering. The nation is suffering from a widespread lack of truly customer-satisfying service. We lack the very thing that we need to make this new paradigm work efficiently: service-ability.

Organizations of all kinds are facing high customer churn, serious customer antagonism, loss of consumer confidence and plummeting customer satisfaction. Research shows that totally satisfying the customer is the only thing that will secure loyalty and offer significant competitive advantage. Yet still, on a daily basis we encounter service that frustrates us.

Whilst the emergence of technology has no doubt brought efficiency to many areas of business activity, including the third sector, it has led to the standardised and indifferent service we regularly receive. We appear to have lost sight that people do business with people. Through efficient technology, our organisations may be serviceable but they are not service able.

The arrival of Generation Y and the developments in social media, provide businesses with a whole new way to engage with their customers, but also provide a new way for customers to rate companies, products and services: not always in a positive manner. ‘Like’ or ‘#Fail’ have become part of our social language.

Organizations that refocus on the need to treat customers in a way that satisfies them, and not the technology, will have better customer retention, lower costs of replacement and will build their brand value through better reputations.

Service-Ability delves deeply into these areas to show how today's managers need to re-think the way we structure, manage, lead and organize our companies to achieve total ‘customer-centric’ work cultures that develop lasting relationships with customers.

Experiential marketing – or memorable customer experiences – is proving a popular tool amongst businesses seeking to make an impact in a competitive world. Yet the scramble to achieve a presence among experience providers has led many companies to design and implement experiential marketing without integrating it with their overall marketing strategy. These companies often end up dissatisfying their customers rather than delighting them.

This research anthology investigates different angles of experiential marketing. The 16 chapters are organised in six sections. The first section considers whether memorable customer experiences result from the use of traditional marketing practices, perhaps implemented more effectively than previously, or require entirely new practices with new foundations that turn companies into experience providers. Section two details ways businesses seek to build brands through putting experiential marketing into practice, while section three asks whether there are general principles that can be applied to the design of customer experiences which ensure successful outcomes whatever market you may operate in. Section four examines how companies manage their customer experiences once they have made the strategic decision to provide them, and section five looks at methods available to evaluate the success of these customer experiences.

'Experiential marketing changes everything!' claim the management gurus, but is it really so significant that not joining this race is dangerous? The last section of the book offers a much needed critique of experiential marketing.

'The Human Resources Scorecard: measuring the return on investment' is the first book to provide a comprehensive, step-by-step process for measuring return on investment in human resources programs. Based on the classic ROI definition of earnings divided by investment, the ROI Process developed 20 years ago by co-author Jack J Phillips aids managers in determining and improving the bottom-line impact that human resource programs have on an organization. The ROI Process provides six additional measures in the form of a scorecard to track and monitor the total impact of the human resource programs.

'The Human Resources Scorecard' is essential for human resource executives, professionals, CEOs, CFOs, consultants, professors and other managers concerned with their businesses' bottom lines.
Jack J. Phillips, Ph.D. is a renowned expert of measurement and evaluation. He provides consulting services for Fortune 500 companies and workshops for major conference providers throughout the world. He is also an author or editor of more than 20 books and 100 articles.
Ron D. Stone is vice president and chief consulting officer for Performance Resources Organization. He is also director of the company's consulting practices in measurement and accountability. He has published numerous articles on the subject of ROI.
Patricia Pulliam Phillips is chairman and CEO of the Chelsea Group, a consulting and publishing organization that focuses on accountability issues in organizations. She works with organizations to implement measurement and evaluation processes.
The Challenge
Built to Last, the defining management study of the nineties, showed how great companies triumph over time and how long-term sustained performance can be engineered into the DNA of an enterprise from the verybeginning.

But what about the company that is not born with great DNA? How can good companies, mediocre companies, even bad companies achieve enduring greatness?

The Study
For years, this question preyed on the mind of Jim Collins. Are there companies that defy gravity and convert long-term mediocrity or worse into long-term superiority? And if so, what are the universal distinguishing characteristics that cause a company to go from good to great?

The Standards
Using tough benchmarks, Collins and his research team identified a set of elite companies that made the leap to great results and sustained those results for at least fifteen years. How great? After the leap, the good-to-great companies generated cumulative stock returns that beat the general stock market by an average of seven times in fifteen years, better than twice the results delivered by a composite index of the world's greatest companies, including Coca-Cola, Intel, General Electric, and Merck.

The Comparisons
The research team contrasted the good-to-great companies with a carefully selected set of comparison companies that failed to make the leap from good to great. What was different? Why did one set of companies become truly great performers while the other set remained only good?

Over five years, the team analyzed the histories of all twenty-eight companies in the study. After sifting through mountains of data and thousands of pages of interviews, Collins and his crew discovered the key determinants of greatness -- why some companies make the leap and others don't.

The Findings
The findings of the Good to Great study will surprise many readers and shed light on virtually every area of management strategy and practice. The findings include:

Level 5 Leaders: The research team was shocked to discover the type of leadership required to achieve greatness. The Hedgehog Concept (Simplicity within the Three Circles): To go from good to great requires transcending the curse of competence. A Culture of Discipline: When you combine a culture of discipline with an ethic of entrepreneurship, you get the magical alchemy of great results. Technology Accelerators: Good-to-great companies think differently about the role of technology. The Flywheel and the Doom Loop: Those who launch radical change programs and wrenching restructurings will almost certainly fail to make the leap.

“Some of the key concepts discerned in the study,” comments Jim Collins, "fly in the face of our modern business culture and will, quite frankly, upset some people.”

Perhaps, but who can afford to ignore these findings?

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