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Thursday, November 21, 2019

5 Reasons We Don't Get Close to our Customer

Photo by Siora Photography on Unsplash
In the innovation process, one of the most important tasks is to get close to those you are seeking to serve. But, as one who is directly involved in intrapreneurship work, let me tell you that this task is one of the hardest to follow through on.

Why is that? What keeps us from getting close to those we desire to serve? Let me give you 5 reasons for your consideration:

  1. We are afraid that the idea we love so much will not be appreciated by those we want to use it. It is easier to hope they will like it than face the potential rejection if they don't. 
  2. It is hard work to get on people's schedules and coordinate the time to get input from our target market. 
  3. Sometimes we don't have a good enough understanding of who we our customer is to actually get real people in a room. 
  4. There is a tendency to make the process too complex. We think we have to have fancy focus groups or surveys with thousands of people to get input. In the process we minimize the value of getting the feedback we can access today.
  5. Being so close to our product/service, we can struggle to know what to ask and what input to request. 
If any of these five issues have kept you from engaging your audience with your innovation project, I would encourage you to take this first step: Find one person who you think would use what you are developing, explain it to them/show it to them and then ask them what they think. Start simple, get out there and be ready to listen and respond! 

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