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Anticipate: Knowing What Customers Need Before They Do by Jeff Tobe, Bill Thomas

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Chapter 1

Strategy—Creating and Destroying Customer Value

  • Assess your strategy’s potential for success
  • Dispel common myths about strategy and its drivers
  • Introduce the Customer Focus Framework and Maturity Model

It’s estimated that as many as 90 percent of strategies fail to deliver the value or results they were intended to.1 In most cases, that “value” is generally interpreted to mean shareholder value, return on capital employed, or some other proxy for a predictable and dependable return on investment. Some of those failures are significant, some are modest, and some are incremental—but in all cases, the feeling is . . . they could have done better.

Our experience shows two main reasons why strategies fail to deliver as promised. They were either faulty in design, or they were faulty in implementation. And oftentimes, it’s some of both. This holds true whether you’re trying to develop a broad business strategy or a more specific customer focus strategy. Chances are, if your organization has a formal customer focus strategy, you feel pretty good about its chances for success. And if you personally played a role in designing that strategy, you’re most likely feeling quite bullish about it. Let’s see. The following pages contain a brief assessment that will give you some insight into what you might realistically expect about your customer focus strategy’s likelihood of success.

Assessing Your Strategy’s Potential for Success

This self-assessment is meant to help you evaluate ...

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