In 1942 Joseph Schumpeter, an economist, coined the phrase “creative destruction” to describe the process by which innovation continually upends products and markets. After reading excerpts of his writings this week, I thought about three simple examples outlined below. But the key message is that product manufacturers cannot assume the products they sell now will be in demand in the future.
When you are out and about or even on vacation, do you observe the customer service you receive? What are your thoughts about the customer you receive every day?
I just spent the last seven weeks traveling in an RV with my wife visiting clients and prospects. Given what we do as a firm, I always pay attention to customer service I receive most anywhere. As we drove through the upper Midwest, I kept my eyes and ears open. Here are some of my observations:
Over the past month or so, Laura, my wife, and I have been traveling throughout the Midwest visiting clients and prospects. The visits have been great, and it is always helpful to get out of the office and learn about the real issues in trying to create a better customer service experience.
One common refrain heard from the companies I met with is “our performance has stalled! We don’t seem to be able to move the performance needle up” even after we have steps taken to improve processes including customer service training.
Have you ever expressed interest in a product online but were never contacted by the company?
I recently visited a website seeking a specialty product for recreational vehicles. (Since I travel a good deal by RV and am always looking for products that will make traveling easier or better in some way.) The website was very user-friendly, and I easily requested more information. I received an email indicating that all their products were sold through dealers, and a dealer in my area (without the name provided) would contact me soon.
As some of the readers of this blog know, I frequently travel by RV. Given that we have many clients scattered throughout North America, many in small, difficult-to-reach places, an RV makes a lot of sense. Plus, I get to travel in the company of my wife and, this trip, my dog (not sure how she likes it).
One of the things that happens when I travel by RV is life tends to slow down and I have more time to read articles and books I don’t normally read. On this trip, I have focused on news about innovative new products, specifically in fields that may be over saturated, or there is the feeling that there is no room to innovate. I want to highlight three that caught my attention.