New Boxers: Part II
(the demand was overwhelming for my last post, New Boxers and the Secret to Designing Lucrative Innovation, therefore here’s “more of the story” intended to help you flourish)
If you want to become a New Boxer and dominate your industry with “Oh Sh*t!” –type innovation, then here’s a premium post just for you. As always, the key has nothing to do with you or your brilliance. Rather, it has everything to do with your approach to the all-knowing orb, the customer.
One of the most valuable, fun and revealing questions to ask customers is,
“What supplier do you value the most, and why? Who can’t you live without?”
Be sure to qualify the question, though, ensuring that the customer chooses a provider outside of your industry. This gets them thinking across the entire enterprise, not pigeonholed by you and your industry. You will see their mind open up like never before, no longer handcuffed by you and your annoying, selfish, selling ways.
I can damn near guarantee that the answers will not only surprise you – comments you’ve never heard before – but they will also deliver clear expectations that can be used to win business by designing a more profound value proposition. In fact, if you ask that question of your top ten customers – or more importantly, your top ten prospects – you will have “new truths” raw material.
This is where New Boxers play, and how they win time and again, always 20 steps ahead of their competition – that is, if they even have any competition. Consider Tesla and Cirque de Soleil, for example. Those two organizations designed, developed and delivered products, services and experiences never seen before.
New Boxers know their customer better than anyone. That doesn’t mean that they routinely “see what others miss.” Rather, they position themselves to recognize new truths by understanding the customer on a very deep level. Ethnography is not for the faint of heart. It’s damn hard work!
To be crystal clear, New Boxers understand their customer’s world even better than they do. That’s a high bar, right? Now, it’s up to you. Will you do the work? Can you change? How willing are you to adjust your belief system? How badly do you want to win?
As you may have noticed, this post demonstrates why empathy, emotional intelligence, and curiosity are the three most important qualities sought after today, and sadly are in short supply … which is why sameness continues to be the business disease that’s reached epidemic proportions, preventing good companies from growing organically.
My hope is that even one New Boxer will emerge from those of you who internalize this knowledge and have the courage to do the work. If that’s you, please comment and let me know how you’re doing, OK? I’m rooting for you!
Why leadership should trash their current business model, reject popular sales advice, operate like a startup, and leverage the new rules for prosperity to achieve explosive profitable revenue growth (PRG).