Executive with a Track Record in Developing Growth Strategies and Solutions: I have devised and implemented winning strategies that have opened up new markets and business opportunities. I have developed strategies that address customer/market needs, secured buy-in from executives/board, motivated the functional organizations to deliver and launched successful products & business models.

 

Family Man: I enjoy spending time with my beautiful wife and two lovely kids. As a family we are a good mix of outdoors and indoors. My son and I are pretty much outdoors and sports oriented while my daughter and my wife like the indoors. This diversity of interests helps us maintain good balance in our lives.

Customer Experience: Nine factors that impact customer experience

The above slide show gives you a brief overview of this topic, while the blog below gives longer narrative. Download a free chapter from my book for even more details.

Many of us have had customer experience horror stories, either that of your cellphone not working when you have a flat tire, or that of being stuck at an airport for hours or many other such situations. After each of these situations we wonder if the company cares about us as a customer and do they really need our business.

On the other hand, companies are trying to solve the puzzle related to delivering best-in-class customer experience. They have leadership roles focused on “Customer Experience” and have it as part of their core strategy. They are hoping to solve this puzzle and become a brand loved by customers.

So how should a company solve the customer experience puzzle in a way that is easy to understand, some way that would help them differentiate themselves against the competition.

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Improving Customer Experience in a Connected World

Happy New Year 2015

After a long hiatus from blogging I am back as I see some very interesting developments that have prompted me to blog.

In November 2014 issue of HBR, an article by Michael E Porter and James E Heppelmann on the topic of “How Smart, Connected Products Are Transforming Competition” got me excited. In summary, that article talked about the third wave of IT transformation where IT is becoming part of the product itself through the additions of sensors, processors, software, connectivity and analytics. Companies like Cisco, Bosch and others have talked about this concept as “Internet of Everything”, which in itself is a big challenge and huge opportunity. more

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5 Steps for Setting Innovation Goals

Innovation Challenges

Innovation is not easy, as it usually involves developing something that has not been done before with the hope that the target audiences like the end results. Not only that, throughout this journey many variables need to managed, like executive sponsorship for innovation, funding, employee motivation, customer interest, product development and marketing, supporters and naysayers, just to name a few. It is challenging to make sure that these forces align. This is done by having a clear innovation goals well before you start the journey.
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Don’t Be Surprised By Your Customers – Maker’s Mark Case Study

I wrote this post for Jeffrey Baumgartner and it was posted in his 103 report on 7/3/2013

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makers-mark-bourbon-290x290Mid February 2013, CEO of Maker’s Mark, Rob Samuels was preparing to reverse the biggest marketing blunder in the history of this company. Their decision to water down their bourbon from 45% alcohol content to 42% alcohol content was not received well by the market. This resulted in a backlash from their loyal customer base and gave competitors an opportunity to attack them. more

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Better Customer Experience Delivers Better Value to the Customers

Long ago, when I was interviewing for a consulting job, I had to learn the consulting speak. And one of the cliché in that consulting speak was “delivering value to clients”, which when used would signal to my potential employer that I am “client ready” and ready for the job.

“Delivering Value to Clients” is part of the core strategy for many consulting companies, it was the core theme of most meetings, it was even part of employee evaluations.

But what does it really mean? Can we measure it easily and consistently? Is there a metric that indicates if we have delivered value? more

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Fab.com : Customer Experience Success Story

This is an updated blog post on the customer experience driven innovation story of Fab.com.

In January 2010, Jason Goldberg and Bradford Shellhammer launched Fabulis.com, a social networking website for gay people. The initial vision of the founders was to become Yelp, Groupon and Facebook for gay people. Jason Goldberg was a successful serial entrepreneur who had successfully exited a couple of ventures before and Bradford Shellhammer was good with design. They both launched this social networking website which managed to attract 110,000 total customers and about 30,000 active users. Though they built a good website, Fabulis.com did not deliver a differentiated customer experience compared to Yelp, Groupon or Facebook, so gay people did not feel the need to use this website.

By early 2011, the founders realized that they need to do something different. So they shut down the site in order to develop a newer, un-served niche where they could be much more successful — one based on design. In June 2011, they launched Fab.com, a flash sales website (i.e. a site that offers products at deep discounts for a limited time) for the fashion-oriented customer segment. more

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Social Responsibility Focused Innovation in Pharma Industry

In early 80s a new deadly disease came into existence, first in some gay men, then in injection drug users followed by users of blood related products. Most of the patients affected by this pandemic has suppressed immune systems and were falling severely sick with diseases that people with a decent immune system would never get. This caused alarm for National Institute of Health (NIH) and they started funding research projects to figure out the basic science behind the disease which we refer to as Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS). They demonstrated that Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) causes AIDS and funded basic and clinical research to discover drugs that could treat the HIV infection. They have also funded clinical trials to figure out the drug combinations for slowing down, halting and preventing the HIV infection. more

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Innovation Process: Essential Discipline for Innovators

Have you heard of an entrepreneur or visionary who believes in a methodical process. Well there are very few of those, but many visionaries do not believe in process. They rather figure things out and get them done. Process for them is bureaucracy which just delays work without adding much value.

Many of these visionaries start projects without performing required due diligence. Many of them realize mid-way through the project that it is not as attractive as they first thought, as a result wasting a lot of time and resources. more

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