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Article CX Strategy

What's the Benchmark for Customer Centricity?

While I’m out there banging the drum for customer centricity, I’m often asked ‘what’s the real benchmark for customer centricity?’.

My path to becoming a big believer in customer centricity isn’t via a marketing textbook or the teachings of a management guru. It’s built through years of managing companies that are fighting for growth, many of them turnaround situations.

It’s as simple as this. Eventually your business is going to end up doing what the customer wants — because that is what you’ll get paid the most money for and will be easiest to sell. The only question is this — will your company take the quickest path there or will you first waste time trying to take a non customer centric approach — fail — and then eventually get there anyway?

That’s the real point — I’ve seen most companies waste a lot of time being internally centric and then eventually ‘get it’ and pivot towards the customer. Some fall down financially before they ‘get it’.

So there in lies the answer to the original question. There isn’t a benchmark you’re aiming for — it’s getting to the heart of your business. Building everything around getting as close as possible to what the customer wants — and as a result making it easier to generate more revenue at a lower cost of acquisition.

I’ve led a number of turnarounds of B2B companies and I usually start with the customer data. The reason? It’s the quickest way to spot places where the company is out of sync with its customers. I’ve found it to be a kickstart for getting the company back on the right footing.

My definition of customer centricity isn’t a management principle. It’s lighter fluid for kickstarting a new phase of growth or a turnaround of a business. It’s the simplest way to shorten the path to growth and profitability.

Sep 3, 2015  
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