Customer/Employee Empowerment

  • Online Customer Communities Are Strategic

    Why We All Need to Build a Core Competency in Nurturing Customer Communities

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    Vibrant customer communities are a hallmark of businesses that lead in product and service innovation. Here are a few tips to nurturing and spawning online customer communities.
    Sep. 14, 2006
    Strategies
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  • Asterisk and Digium

    Shaking Up the Telecom Industry by Harnessing Customers’ Creativity

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    The Digium/Asterisk story provides a good example of one way to build a viable for-profit business leveraging the open-source model while fostering customer-led innovation.
    Aug. 31, 2006
    Strategies
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  • Enabling Customer Co-Design

    Using Customer Co-Design Tools and Innovation Toolkits

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    Here’s an overview of the different kinds of customer co-design tools that you may find of value in working with lead users (advanced users who aren’t yet customers) and lead customers.
    Aug. 10, 2006
    Strategies
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  • Customized, Built-to-Order Products

    Solutions that Are Configured by Me and Built for Me

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    When you enable mass customization, you’re designing all of your product development and manufacturing processes from the customers’ point of view—from the outside in.
    Aug. 10, 2006
    Strategies
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  • Give Customers Important Roles to Play in Shaping Your Business

    Natural Behaviors You Can Tap to Unleash Customer Innovation

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    Our research in customer innovation revealed that there are five distinct roles that passionate customers naturally adopt with respect to an organization whose products and services they care about.
    Jul. 6, 2006
    Strategies
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  • Bathing Your Organization in Real-Time Customer Context

    Using Online Communities to Understand Customers’ Passions, Issues, and Needs

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    Learn how a number of consumer companies—Hallmark, Unilever, Kraft, RC2 and Charles Schwab—are using vibrant online customer communities to help them design and market their products.
    Jun. 22, 2006
    Strategies
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  • Muji

    Engaging Customers to Help with Product Design

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    Muji—a well-known retail brand in Japan—has integrated customer input and suggestions into its core business operations. Muji encourages customers to submit product design ideas and to comment and vote on each others' ideas.
    Jun. 15, 2006
    All Members
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  • Making Outside Innovation the “Path of Least Resistance” in Your Organization

    A Blueprint for Harnessing Customer-Led Innovation

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    Organizations that are doing a great job of harnessing their customers’ creativity to fuel innovation have five practices in common. You can leapfrog your competition by taking these five steps.
    May. 11, 2006
    Strategies
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  • Introduction to Outside Innovation

    The Outside Innovation Imperative

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    The outside innovation process involves engaging with lead users and lead customers in a variety of roles to create new products, processes, and business models. There are 7 ways in which outside innovation differs from traditional innovation processes.
    Mar. 30, 2006
    All Members
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  • Customer Scenario® Design: An Approach for Outside Innovation

    Co-Designing Your Business with Your Customers

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    Here are the fundamentals of Customer Scenario Mapping, our methodology for outside-in co-design.
    Mar. 23, 2006
    All Members
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  • Branded Customer Service

    Barlow and Stewart Promote a Strong Linkage between Brand and Customer Service

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    This book educates you about the differences between on-brand and off-brand customer service delivery.
    Sep. 29, 2005
    All Members
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  • Leading an “Issues and Vision” Discussion with Customers (and Partners)

    Tips for Gaining a Lot of Customer Context in a Short Time (and How to Kick Off a Customer Scenario® Mapping Session)

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    What’s the most effective way to capture customers’ current and ideal requirements about your business, about current or potential products and services, about your processes, about the brand experience you offer?
    Sep. 15, 2005
    Strategies
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  • Let Customers Co-Design Your Customer-Critical Initiatives

    How and When to Use Customer Scenario® Mapping

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    What’s the best way to gather customer requirements? Invite customers to co-design their ideal processes with your cross-functional team. Design your requirements to meet your customers’ future requirements.
    May. 26, 2005
    All Members
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  • Establishing and Nurturing a Customer-Centric Culture

    Lessons Learned from the Masters (Caterpillar Financial Services, Harrah’s Entertainment, and Lands’ End)

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    How do you build and nurture a customer-centric culture? Here are some lessons learned from three very different kinds of companies: Caterpillar Financial Services, Harrah’s Entertainment, and Lands’ End.
    May. 5, 2005
    All Members
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  • What Are Customer Experience Best Practices?

    Summary of Our Findings from the APQC Total Customer Experience Benchmark and a Report Card for You

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    Here’s our high-level summary of the best practices that we discovered in a recent conference conducted by the American Productivity and Quality Council between 10/04 and 4/05. We include a Customer Experience Report Card you can use to rate yourselves.
    Apr. 28, 2005
    Strategies
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  • Building Buy-In for Customer-Centric Initiatives

    Facilitate Group Interviews with Key Stakeholders to Build Trust and Momentum

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    Use this group interview technique to build a shared mental model of both current reality and a vision for the customer experience you’d like to be able to deliver.
    Apr. 21, 2005
    Strategies
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  • Why It's Hard to Prioritize IT Initiatives around End-Customer Impacting Issues

    Current Disconnects between Business and IT; Suggestions for Bridging the Gaps

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    Are you having trouble getting customer-centric priorities at the top of your IT shopping list? You're not alone. There are increased tensions brewing between the business and IT for lots of good reasons. See if your organization looks like the picture w
    Nov. 10, 2004
    Strategies
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  • The Death of Command and Control?

    Leaders of Large Organizations in Business, Politics, and Even the Military Are in for Some Big Surprises

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    Your organization’s culture is about to be challenged by the “Digital Natives” who have entered the workforce. Are you prepared? Unlikely.
    Feb. 19, 2004
    All Members
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  • Capturing Customer Requirements for Content Management

    Using Customer Scenario® Mapping to Gather Requirements for Information Attributes, Metadata, Roles, and Responsibilities

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    What’s the best way to scope and launch any ECM initiative? Start with the audience for the information; identify that audience’s critical scenarios; then identify the information and content required to support those scenarios, the content attributes an
    Dec. 24, 2003
    Strategies
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  • Emerging Governance Structures for Tackling Information Management

    Laying the Structure for a Strategic Core Competency in Information Management

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    Information management is looming as a necessary strategic core competence for organizations in the 21st century. Here’s how forward-thinking organizations are organizing themselves to tackle information management strategically.
    Nov. 13, 2003
    All Members
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