If companies embrace a resource-centric strategy, business will ultimately stall. You cannot reignite growth by innovating more around those same resources. Sure, it is easy to have your operations team perform exhaustive research around equipment and production. You can even get the executive team to create a brilliant new strategy for your offering. But those decisions alone will not enable you to compete against the disruptive entities that are eating away at just about every industry.
Progressive leaders must set aside their attachment to resources and redirect their company’s primary focus to customers. To truly innovate, you must remove the impediments to customer-centricity among your executive team and your management team. But this flies in the face of the cold reality that companies are not customer-centric—people are.
If you want people to do something, they must own the skill and want to participate. So, if they want to do something, but lack the skill, nothing will happen. Subsequently, if they own the skill, but lack the motivation, nothing will happen.
It would follow that if companies realize true innovation lies with the customer and that people are the key to being customer-centric, those same people must be equipped with the skills and properly motivated.
To truly innovate, you must remove the impediments to customer-centricity among your executive team and your management team.
To help employees favor the customer’s evolving needs, you must put a great deal at their disposal. This includes opportunities to observe or connect with customers, along with detailed approaches for understanding them.
This may sound easy, but the reality is you need a central intelligence within your organization that allows you to understand customers better than anyone. Your resources are not your competitive advantage. Your customers are your most valuable possessions. And all of your major business decisions should enhance your ability to increase the number of customers and leverage them for success.
A lot of work is needed and a new approach is required in order build that central intelligence and understand your market better. You may recall that Warren Buffett predicted organizations needed to buy media companies or act like media companies. He then purchased Media General, which owned more than 400 local newspapers because he wanted to control what people were reading.
Buyers do not rely on one salesperson who has all the information. They go through self-discovery by digesting content that resonates with them. They want content that is about them and that reads in a way that not only educates but entertains.
So it is time to start acting like a media company in order to engage more directly and further your understanding of your prospective client base.
It is time to remove the impediments to your success and innovate through the use of content creation and customer-centricity.