Bringing the customer to the Boardroom

Knowing and understanding the customer helps a business tailor winning propositions, make better decisions and is ultimately inextricably linked with stronger, faster growth.

At Incite, we pride ourselves in adopting a human-centric approach to every client challenge. Thinking ‘people-first’ in building strategy, we recognise that equity exists not only on a company’s balance sheet, but also in the minds of customers, employees, suppliers and other stakeholders.

Customer-centricity as the key to value creation

It has never been more important that business leaders and investors have a clear and rich understanding of their audience to inform decision making and plans. Misguided strategies destroy value, and a lack of customer-centric thinking is one of the biggest pitfalls in strategy development.

Some businesses nail it and go to great lengths to achieve and maintain that all important connection. A favourite example is the CEO of Pizza Hut, Jens Hoffner, who regularly rolls up his sleeves and works shifts in restaurants to get the perspective of customers and staff.

On a global scale, Amazon is arguably winning, in part thanks to its customer-centric culture; Jeff Bezos reportedly opening his email and phone up to customer complaints to make sure that they are acted upon and solved in the best manner. And the entrepreneurial intuition of some of the best founder-led business is undeniable, inherently designed with the customer at the heart, having seen a need, recognised an opportunity and built a proposition to deliver against it.

Barriers to building a customer-centric strategy and how to overcome them

Not enough boards hear what the customer has to say, and three key blockers to putting the customer at the heart, include:

1 / Over emphasis on the balance sheet, where questions of governance and finance dominate board attention
2 / Disconnected functions, where the intel is there, but the left hand does not talk to the right hand, and the ‘customer stuff’ does not make it to the board table
3 / Unpredictable dynamics, at a time of unprecedented change with shifting consumer behaviours and habits

The customer is more powerful and less predictable than ever, and this is both a risk and an opportunity.

Incite has all the tools and wherewithal to get under the skin of the audience. We take it a step further to work with our clients to really embed the intel into the strategy and planning.

  • We work out what you know, what you don’t know, and what you don’t know you don’t know about your customers!
  • We join the dots; paint as clear a picture as possible and identify the knowledge gaps
  • We gather the evidence and answers and play this back in a way that brings the customer to life, engages key stakeholders and takes them on the journey
  • We vision the future and work through different scenarios to ensure all angles are covered
  • We facilitate your strategy development and plans to achieve your long and short-term goals
  • We develop a board-level reporting system to keep the customer at the heart moving forwards, keep the finger on the pulse and adapting strategy to changing market forces and customer needs

Our key message – customer-centricity supports effective, long-term strategy, and allows boards to revive and drive their companies’ growth.

Please get in touch with us to hear more about how we could work with you to build and grow your business with the customer at the heart.