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Is a fantastic product alone enough for true success?

A fantasic product will only take you so far to success. I have argued that a strategy based mainly on product differentiation; without considering other aspects of a customer’s journey, is not a robust strategy for the long run. 

Why? 

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The Evolution of the Service Experience: Cooperation and its Impact on Customer Expectation

I cannot say if customer service is, in general, improving or getting worse.  The American Customer Satisfaction Index suggests that customer service improved until mid-2014 but has been trending downward since. It is probably growing in some industries and not in others. Personally, I am occasionally impressed with the service, but the service I receive is “adequate.”  I give talks frequently, and I often start the presentation by asking who can recall a positively memorable service experience in the last few months. Typically, I will see a smattering of raised hands.  If asked about unsatisfactory service experiences, the number of hands raised is usually far larger. Is Customer expectation changing or is consistency slipping?

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Organizational Culture: It Cannot be Ignored

We have observed the better performing clients on our ServiceConnect program seem to have a different organizational culture.  Often, you can't put your finger on it but there is a palpable difference.  For example, when you walk in the door and meet an employee there is a palpable difference in the way they approach you. Among those clients with better customer service, the employees may be a bit friendlier and go out of their way to welcome you.  More fundamental to a healthy organizational culture (and a bigger thing) is an openness to new ideas and a willingness to give a try to new things.

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