People will go to almost any lengths to avoid being inconvenienced and to avoid painful experiences.
Those are huge factors driving online sales. But wait, aren’t they just as important in the business each of us are in?
What is your business doing, right now, that inconveniences customers? What things do your customers view as a real pain when they purchase goods or services from you?
Many of us ask customers how we can serve them better. And we usually get answers that don’t help us or them much. Customers don’t want to think of ways to make our business better. Customers care about what makes their experience with us better.
Change your question to: What part of your experience with us frustrates you? Inconvenient’s you?
Whole industries are getting turned upside down by new approaches to serve customers. Think about buying a new car or truck. Most of us hated the idea of visiting dealerships and having to face car salespeople. Along came TrueCar.com which lets you identify what car you want to buy, with which accessories, and then tells you which dealers have that vehicle in stock and what you will pay for it. You then call the dealer and make arrangements to go in, drive the car, and then make the purchase for the Internet agreed price.
Now there is a new player that will help you find the car, arrange financing and get your insurance all at once…and then they’ll deliver the car to you, typically within a week.
Next meeting with your employees, ask them what your company does that is inconveniencing or frustrating customers. Then test those assumptions by asking customers. Address their needs quickly…or risk other businesses solving those problems and taking your customers.
Apply above to employees and investments.
What things does your company do that frustrate employees? Make their job more difficult? Or less satisfying? What are you doing that encourages your employees to look for other jobs? If you don’t know, ask!
Keep above in mind as you look at investment opportunities in new fields of technology, medicine, science, etc. Who has products or services that make people’s lives better or easier?