It is amazing how many organizations have worked hard at removing the “Relationship” from business. Take for instance the use of a Procurement or Sourcing department. These departments are professional buyers of goods and services, whose entire mission is to extract as much value as possible from a new vendor. (i.e. – get the best service for as cheap as possible) The issue here, as the article describes is that by starting a relationship in this manner places the “Relationship” secondary, and forces the new vendor to already be on the defensive because of tight margin to provide the goods/services requested.
So my question is simple, does procurement and sourcing teams help establish sound business relationships, or does it simply create a transactional business environment?
Co-creation emphasizes the generation and ongoing realization of mutual organization-customer value. Historically, organizations spent too much time and effort to extract as much value out of a relationship as possible. Unfortunately, customers are now more knowledgeable, connected and interactive than they have ever been. This was one of the themes in my Evolution of the Contact Center post last month, I subtitled this ‘Governance’. In trying to play catch-up on my reading, the June issue of Harvard Business Review took a similar stance. They called it “Pricing to Create Shared Value” (by Marco Bertini and John T. Gourville).
While my focus was (and still is) customer service, the HBR article in the June 2012 issue focuses much more on pricing strategies. There are some great examples, ones many of us have heard before. The airlines (yes, the poster child for doing things wrong). Do everything they can to extract value…
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