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Showing posts from May 3, 2015

Does spending $11 billion on CRM-software help understand CR?

"Despite the $11 billion spent on CRM software annually, many consumer companies don't understand customer relationships at all. They aren't aware of the variety of relationship types and don't understand what kind their customers want." That's what Jill Avery, Susan Fournier, and John Wittenbraker say in Unlock the Mysteries of Your Customer Relationships (HBR July-Aug 2014)

Today: a lot of innovations, but mostly trivial

Today's innovations and startups are:

Smaller than what we saw 20 or 30 years agoApps masquerading as platforms, platforms masquerading as breakthroughsComing from startup incubators, not labs or garagesRarely push the boundaries of basic or even applied scienceTrivial or even laughable ventures than truly disruptive technologies.
There's a lot happening today (thanks to democratization of entrepreneurship with easier funding), but the disappointment is that these innovations/startups are not changing the world.

Source: HBR Oct2014

Today: P&G and other large firms are refocusing on "focus"

"Focus" has returned to the boardroom! Folks at large companies such as P&G, GM, Ford, Pfizer, and GE are questioning the benefits of scale and the wisdom of managing multiple/divergent product lines.

Take P&G. Since around the late 90s, CEO AG Lafley was celebrated for building P&G into the world's largest consumer-product company – through acquisitions and product innovations. He retired, but was coaxed back to the corner office in 2013. Now he is dismantling what he built, dropping as many as 100 product lines.

Is this a return to the concept of positioning that Al Ries & Jack Trout gave us in the 80s (I've used positioning to set up and run practice groups at behemoths TCS and Cognizant)? Or are these changes simply the workings of transient strategy that Rita McGrath has written about recently?