Monday 19 September 2011

Are you providing what people want or are you trying to provide what you think people need?

The Australian Government is currently and desperately trying to make law what they think people need in immigration, dealing with climate change, gambling, and in a host of other areas. They are failing miserably because they do not listen to what stakeholders actually want.

This news release by the Business Council of Australia demonstrates that the Government may be listening yet clearly they are not understanding, which of course really means they are not listening!

I am staggered by the amount of business owners I meet who try and build a business around what they think people need, rather than providing what people want. The best business to be in today is clearly about providing services/products for customers, rather than trying to find customers for our services/products.

What kind of business are you running? Are you providing what people want or are you trying to provide what you think people need?

You will go broke if your answer is the latter.

The great thing about providing people with what they want and building relationships with our customers over time, is that we can end up providing people with what they need as well.

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Jennifer said...

I find this way of looking at businesses really interesting and also fairly expressed. We had a discussion during a seminar about the coffee industry and how we would be able to increase the amount of fair-traded coffee. However I think the conclusion will be something accordingly to your statement - that we won't be able to sell more fair trade coffee until the demand for it rises. We cannot produce more fair-traded coffee yet, but we can inform people why they should by it and as a consequence of that we will probably see an increasing demand for fair trade coffee!

Ian Berry said...

I agree Jennifer plus as more and more people embrace sustainability, triple bottom line businesses, and social enterprises more and more people will be looking for products like fair trade coffee