Not good: What can customers do for our business? (internal-focus)
Better: What can the company do for customers? (internal-focus)
Best: What do customers need from us? (external focus)
One of these is a sustainable perspective. The best option is to always be asking what needs customers have and to innovate in filling those needs. Becoming too product or self-focused is a recipe for a short product cycle.
Harley Davidson almost went bankrupt in the 80’s until they realized they weren’t just in the “tough-guy” niche biker business. They restructured to appeal to recreational bikers from all walks of life and branched into creating new models at light and mid-weights to supplement their traditional heavy options. They also embraced their image as the higher demand, high-quality, and higher-priced motorcycles of today.
Self-fulfillment and sustained superiority over time in business and relationships requires an other-centered approach.
For you to be most happy, make others happy:
Not good: What can my spouse do for me?
Better: What can I do for my spouse?
Best: What does my spouse need from me?