Some time ago, I engaged the services of a supplier, offering a service to me that required a deep understanding of the business in which I worked. That supplier knew their offering well and provided excellent service to a wide range of clients.
With this project, they failed – why?
Understanding of the Business
Because they didn’t understand the business. They didn’t have a strong grasp of our strategy or our market. Or of what makes that business unique. Who the clients are and why they chose to work with that business.
It failed because they didn’t immerse themselves in the business, just took a superficial view of the requirements and followed the specification.
The experience brought into sharp focus my method of engagement with a client.
Understanding of the Clients
I’m often devising or implementing a business strategy or a marketing campaign for clients or implementing an on-line campaign to capture a willing audience. How on earth could anyone do that without taking the time and care to understand how the business worked, the people in that business, the products that it had delivered successfully, the achievements of which it was most proud.
Gaining New Customers
More than that, how could you hope to gain new customers, if you didn’t first understand and appreciate the existing ones? It’s critical to successful project outcome that I completely engage in, understand and share a companies’ vision.
Without understanding, without working hard to maintain a dialogue of feedback and reinforcement, without regular project meetings, we’d deliver something that matched a specification but not the vision.
And that would be a failure.