Focus On Value and Meaning

06 Sep 2005|Darrel Rhea

I spent the long Labor Day weekend reading a multitude of business and economic publications and watching major corporate advertising on mainstream TV…and am shaking my head today as I come back to the office. Even after decades of aggressive competition in the market and an increasing consciousness among executives and entrepreneurs about what creates demand, it is surprising that so many just don’t get it right. Despite a general recognition that what does work is to offer products that have greater value for customers – that is, that the products deliver meaningful experiences to them — corporations often get side tracked by focusing too heavily on creating internal value. Yes, corporate initiatives such as leveraging technology, core systems, supply chains, financial structures, alliances, channel partners, etc., are important for strengthening a company. But initiatives like these hardly provide the incremental innovation needed to keep up with a demanding customer base much less create the breakthrough innovations required to be a market leader.

Part of the work that we do here at Cheskin that I am most passionate about is helping companies learn and apply processes for innovation that counts: creating customer value through meaning. As mentioned in my latest BusinessWeek Online article “Understanding Why People Buy,” it’s not a new concept – but one that begs exploration and systemization in new ways. No doubt you’ll be seeing more comments about that here.

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