I heard the saying once that many of the great things in this world were accomplished by aspiration or desperation.
That phrase has always stuck with me.
To me, desperation translates to requirements, deadlines and things that put your job on the line. While this pushes many people to do great things, it is typically not a very pleasant process. Aspiration on the other hand is the stuff of dreams and vision and ambition. It is often an exhilarating process because you are creating something that is uniquely yours - something better.
Too often, our lives are so busy that we operate primarily in "desperate" mode. It is true of leaders in business. If you think about it, it is actually easier to run an organization from your perspective rather than the customer's perspective. No worries about customer loyalty or retaining customers, just hit deadlines and make decisions that seem to be the most financially sound.
But you won't get very far. Listening to our customers will make decisions better. Using customer insights across the business will make each department better. A customer centric organization is more successful and better positioned for long-term success.
Customer advocates and strategists can help their organizations step outside the desperate fast pace of business to understand the customer's perspective. They can make sure colleagues receive and use the voice of the customer to make help them make better decisions.
In today's fast paced environment it takes more than leadership and hard work to be a customer centric company. It takes a little aspiration.