I really like how Lynn Hunsaker of ClearAction explains this with her concept of “well -being”.
Some managers view customer-centricity as bending to every customer’s’ whim. Customers are not so irrational. They want you to succeed so you can continue to help them. The transactional customers that don’t, likely shouldn’t be your customers.
Customer-centricity means that your actions are centered on customers’ well-being as it promotes your well-being.
“Well-being” is a balance of generosity and discipline. The well-being of a child requires a balance of recreation, learning, and structure. When customers’ well-being is great they make fewer demands on your company and they are eager to engage in mutual value creation.
Recently at Whole Foods they ran out of nutritional yeast in their bulk products section. I was delighted that they gave me a complimentary packaged nutritional yeast instead. It sounds expensive, but I didn’t need to visit another store. They considered my well-being, valued my time and understood that I was a relational long-term customer.
Customer well-being requires a balance between the benefits they receive from your company and the collective costs they incur: money, time, effort and stress.
If you are looking for more examples of being customer-centric, make sure to get your preview copy of our new book Be Like Amazon: Even a Lemonade Stand Can Do It.