Get it good before you get it great
In the course of this year's Customers First research, no company produced a more polarizing debate than Apple and its Apple Stores. Some people lauded Apple's in-store service desks, called Genius Bars, for spinning an experience out of customers' problems with their iWhatevers. An equal number argued that Genius Bars mask the fact that Apple products don't always get the job done.
The divide cut to the heart of a larger question: Do you have to master the basics before you create meaningful customer experiences? Or can experiences, in effect, ameliorate any underlying troubles in your business? To us, the answer is clear--which is why Apple Stores isn't among our winners. "Are you delivering on the promise of your business?" asks Phil Terry, CEO of experience consultancy Creative Good. "Once you get that right, then you can innovate and do exciting stuff." Read more in.
In our classes we argue that every company should have a distinctive competence but a company also needs competence in the basics too. Our approach to product management helps companies focus on running the business, creating products that sell using a repeatable process, and focusing on the needs of a market rather than just each deal-of-the-day. Product managers can be leaders in getting the basics right.
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