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TAKING SMART RISKS: HOW SHARP LEADERS WIN WHEN STAKES ARE HIGH by Doug Sundheim

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CHAPTER SEVEN

See the World Through Your Customers’ Eyes

Winners invent and live by a process of customer learning and discovery.—STEVEN BLANK, Four Steps to the Epiphany

Custom injection molders make plastic parts for just about everything you use, from controls in cars to keys on computers. Reactive in nature, these companies work on thin margins and are subject to the whims of their customers.

For years, running a custom injection-molding company was pretty straightforward. You landed a few large customers— say automakers—and then churned out parts for them for as long they would let you. Your customers dictated how you ran your business, from processes to pricing to payment terms. Your main point of contact was a low-level purchasing manager ...

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