Business is all about value. I believe this deeply in my bones. Companies exist to create real value. Marketing and sales convert real value into customer perceived value. The price captures this value. This is ingrained in my thinking. I think this way, always.
However, explaining value to potential clients has never been easy. I can’t get people excited about what I think is fascinating and all-encompassing.
While working with a client to create a training course about value for many departments, we were brainstorming ideas for a key takeaway, a single phrase that resonated with everyone and would help the message stick. And of course, I can’t get value out of my head. Then my client said, “our President doesn’t think we focus on the customer enough.” Bingo! Value is about our product. OK, value is about how our product helps our customers.
But then we came up with Customer Impact. I LOVE this. (Partly because it includes my company name.) It completely shifts the focus of employee actions to the customers. I teach that value is about what problems customers want to solve and what results they achieve. Those are both Customer Impact.
Yes, Customer Impact is so much more. Everyone in a company can impact customers. If an accountant messes up an invoice, and a customer has to call to fix it, that impacts their perception. If a QA engineer misses a test, and bad units go out, that impacts customers’ perceptions. If a receptionist answers the phone with a smile in her voice, that impacts customers’ perceptions.
This feels like it will resonate with more people. It focuses on the customer. It doesn’t include the ambiguous word value. The idea is if everyone in your company does their job better, paying attention to customer impact, then your company will create, communicate, and capture more value. In other words, you will win more business at higher prices.
What do you think? What is your customer impact?