What Vendor-Centric vs Customer-Centric Would Look Like on a Date!

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This Guest Blog provided by Kia Puhm first appeared on http://www.kiacx.com

Last week I wrote about how my client was reverting back to a vendor-centric approach to drive increased adoption and usage of their products.

As we looked to develop the playbook to support their channel partners in the integration of the products, as well as enabling them to sell, train, deploy and support their customers in the usage of the solutions, we fell upon an unlikely analogy; a first date.

What would a vendor-centric versus a customer-centric approach look like on a first date between the vendor and the customer?

Vendor-centric approach

In a vendor-centric approach the vendor would focus on getting the customer to understand everything about them.

They would talk all about themselves sharing what they have to offer the relationship (how great they are and how the customer will benefit by being with them), everything the customer needs to know about them (i.e. the “product”), how they operate (so the customer can figure out how best to interact with them), and what the customer needs to do in order for the vendor to achieve what they want out of the alliance.

The vendor would, unintentionally, neglect to ask the customer what they wanted out of the relationship or understand what they like and dislike in order to know what makes them “tick” and want to go out again.

The vendor’s focus would be predominantly on obtaining its own objectives, but they would genuinely feel that they had the best interests of the customer at heart.

Customer-centric approach

In a customer-centric approach the vendor would focus on understanding the customer to see how their mutual interests could be aligned to develop a mutually beneficial relationship.

They would listen to the customer learning about what they want to achieve (so the vendor can figure out how to best support the customer obtaining their goals while achieving its own as well), how they operate (to figure out how best to interact with them and make it easy for the customer), and understand what they like and don’t like (i.e. what is the best way to motivate them) in order to generate excitement about the relationship.

The vendor would use that information, along with its expertise and what it has to offer, to purposefully outline ways to create a mutually beneficial relationship, building trust and confidence from the get go.

The vendor’s focus would be to align the interests of both parties, knowing that long-term relationships are created and expanded when both receive value from the.

Would you want to go on a date with the vendor-centric vendor or the customer-centric one?

A goofy analogy to be sure, but it certainly drives home the point of how goofy we as vendors act when it comes to driving adoption using a vendor-centric approach.

Bottom Line

Understanding the customer and aligning their business interests with a customer-centric, prescriptive approach to realizing value from the vendor’s products is the fastest and most efficient way to product adoption.

Ultimately this leads to value derivation for customers, which in turn leads to customer retention and expansion for the vendor; a match made in heaven and one that lasts and grows!

Check out CEO Insights on Value Realization from Customer Success! also from Kia Puhm at http://kiacx.com

 

#CustomerExperience #Customers #Strategy

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Disaster Strikes!!! Is Your Supply Chain Ready To Recover?

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Hurricanes!  Earthquakes!  Terrorist Attacks!  Train Derailments!  Cyber Attacks!

You see it in the news every minute of every hour of every day.  Either some natural disaster or some man made despicable act has occurred somewhere on the planet.  The result is death, destruction and disruption.

Everyone is trying to pick up the pieces.  They are trying to figure out what has happened, how to come to grips with the catastrophic results,  and how to get things going again.

Depending on what the disaster is people can be struggling to know where they can get the basics such as food, water and shelter.

This is where the Supply Chain must kick in to gear!

Continue reading “Disaster Strikes!!! Is Your Supply Chain Ready To Recover?”

Freight and Logistics (Part 2) – Do you have a Freight Management Strategy or are you Spinning your Wheels?

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In going door to door trying to sell a Freight Management service, as well as in my experience working in companies, I have had the opportunity to see a variety of ways in which companies, large and small, were managing their Freight and Logistics spend.

Most everyone felt they were doing a good job already.  But I’ve seen instances where Freight is one of the top 5 largest expenses within a company.  Yet it is managed by one or two people, with no support, and no visibility from upper management.

Depending on the industry  your transportation spend can make up anywhere from 1-10% of your company’s total revenue.  Aside from the    cost impact the service implications of a poor Freight management system are enormous.

So do you have a strategy for managing Freight and Logistics or are you spinning your wheels?

Continue reading “Freight and Logistics (Part 2) – Do you have a Freight Management Strategy or are you Spinning your Wheels?”

Commodity Management – What is your Buying Strategy?

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In any company or industry that sells products the cost of the raw materials and components is often the single largest expense.  Despite the magnitude of this cost however there is a wide range of focus put on managing this expenditure from proactive and strategic to reactive and tactical.  In some cases there is a great level of  planning applied before a single purchase order is placed.  In other cases buying decisions are made subjectively and with very little focus.  Further the experience in those buying these goods can vary significantly as well.

Supply Chain is about much more than just negotiating lower materials costs.  A well constructed Procurement Strategy will raise the value of the Supply Chain to your company.

How do you manage your materials spend?  Are you executing a Buying Strategy or are you just blindly placing purchase orders ?

Continue reading “Commodity Management – What is your Buying Strategy?”