I was struck a few years back when I read Herb Kelleher’s excellent account of the growth of SouthWest Airlines that he held the view that customers come second whilst employees come first. Aha! I thought, contrarian thinking from the head of a company renowned for delivering a great customer experience, that’s great! And since I have come across similar statements from Richard Branson and many others I have tended to repeat this as a piece of received wisdom. Time then to unpack the issue and ask: in a company that wants to provide a great customer experience do customers come first or second?
I was in a meeting with one of my clients recently where we were reviewing a document that dealt with how to get the voice of the customer more embedded into their project methodology. Following a battle with Microsoft Word’s spell-checker the document referred to a project mythology. Laughs all round but this got me thinking: methodologies are all well and good but it’s an organisation’s mythology that can make all the difference between successful innovation and unsuccessful stagnation.
Why so? Well, let’s look at myths and what they mean. Continue reading “Business innovation 5) What’s your innovation mythology?”
Following my earlier post on Chez Bruce‘s excellent customer service I met with chef-proprietor Bruce Poole to find out how he fosters a culture of service in his restaurant. His comments are an object lesson for businesses of all types aiming to raise the bar in service provision. Continue reading “Chez Bruce: a passion for superior service”