Your Point of Difference is Not Enough

Your Point of Difference is Not Enough

Questions to ponder in a customer empowered world.

Pauline Triggiani recently addressed the SA-NT Educate Plus Chapter hosted by News Corp Australia at Keith Murdoch House, Adelaide. Pauline is a recognised authority and facilitator, whose passion is people, and by extension, teams and organisations.

Pauline provided-evidence based information to support her presentation and showed her expertise in enabling the audience to become engaged and to share their own experience with their peers. This professional development session was warmly received. We will take Pauline’s expertise and enthusiasm back to our own development communities. We look forward to welcoming Pauline again to the SA-NT Chapter Conference in Adelaide, 29th & 30th August 2019.

If your current Point of Difference is not enough… what else do we need?

Historically speaking we live and work in the age of the customer where empowered buyers are demanding a new level of customer involvement and service. Pauline believes what people connect to is a purpose, not a product.

That synergy of purpose and values is the point of difference. Hence, the need to develop a Customer Centric Culture in our organisation.

Differentiating our organisation through our achievements or our product is no longer enough… We must explore their point of difference from a whole new perspective.

What is this new lens… how can we make a difference?

Pauline believes that ‘being Customer Centric, creating the right customer experience, is the only real differentiator for future sustainability and performance’. Evidence shows that having this mind-set and customer culture is essential to finding that point of difference.

In the education environment there is little to differentiate one from another and allow us to stand out from our competitors. It is often difficult to spot the difference. However, being Customer Centric is a mind-set that involves seeing our organisation in a new perspective, through a new lens.

Evidence shows that If we ask the question ‘Are we Customer Centric?’, 91% of leaders and organisations will answer ‘Yes’. However, only 10% of customers (parents and students in a schools’ environment) will agree. This is a challenging insight!

Pauline’s premise reflects the ideas of Simon Sinek who maintains that successful individuals and organisation are those who ask the question Why? – When we ask the question Why are we doing this? we move into the realm of humanity with concepts such as trust, loyalty and purpose.

Pauline supports the belief that aligning your sense of purpose with your customer and creating a customer culture is the only way to differentiate yourself in a world where we have little control over challenges such technology, social media and commoditisation. In an educational setting, we can relate this to enrolments, maintaining students and families, results and outcomes and even long-term loyalty from alumni. These all related to customer satisfaction and ongoing sustainability.

According to Pauline, asking the questions ‘Why are we doing this? and What is our purpose?’ we will find ways to support each other, learn from each other and work as a creative and collaborative team. After all, it is the humanity and sense of purpose that links your organization with your customer.

So how do we do it, where do we begin?

Collaborate with your peers to build an effective team. Break out of your own silo, question your ideas and listen to others. Demonstrate curiosity and creativity to implement change and make a difference. Above all, listen to your customers and your community. Be honest and questioning about how you and your team are aligned with your strategic plan. Are you on the same page in your thinking, your language and your behaviour?

Everyone wants to do great things but remember why are you doing it and who are you doing it for. Remember that what people connect to is a purpose, not a product. That synergy of purpose and shared values with your customers will become your point of difference to sustain your organisation into the future.

We look forward to hearing from Pauline again at the SA-NT Chapter Conference, where she will provide a deep-dive workshop on the disciplines of a Customer Centric Culture that will drive future performance and growth.

Article written with Priority People Consulting’s permission by:
Suzanne Moorhead
Writer for Education and Advancement