Radical Management: Delighting the Customer

There have been a variety of recent business leadership books that propose a departure from traditional management strategies as companies seek to reinvent themselves in the 21st century. One of these new approaches is known as “Radical Management” and is being championed by Australian author and business consultant Steve Denning.

Having spent nearly a decade at the World Bank followed by building a consulting practice that includes clients such as GE, IBM, Microsoft, and McKinsey, Denning has continued to study the ways, in which management needs to evolve and adapt in the global economy.

In particular, Radical Management begins with the goal of Delighting Customers. This concept is not necessarily something new. In fact, management guru Peter Drucker believed, “There is only one valid definition of a business purpose: to create a customer.” However, in an effort to cut costs and hit quarterly numbers, it’s easy for managers to lose sight of the customer experience.

Denning believes, sustainable corporate success is built on delighting the customer, which means, “continuously providing new value… It goes beyond mere transactions; it’s about forging relationships.” Translated into radio, delighting the listener goes beyond mere tune-in occasions: it’s about forging relationships, which is the focus of dmr’s 360° Listener Engagement Strategy.

Radical Delight

According to the research shared by Denning, there are 10 Steps to an organization Delighting Customers.

1. Commit: The focus of the entire organization from executives to the front desk is to bring more value to the audience, sooner than they expect.

2. Target: Identify the core segment of listeners and focus on delighting them first and most.

3. Focus: Deliver the simplest ideas to delight your audience. Complicated and cumbersome enhancements too often simply get in the way.

4. Read their Minds: Meet listeners’ unrecognized needs and delight them with the outcome. dmr’s Points of Passion study helps you understand what matters to your audience, especially when they are not listening to the radio, so you can delight them.

5. Innovate in Stages: Launch the product and services and add selectively through upgrades. Our long time customers find great success in engagement and ratings by adding unexpected incentives for long time listeners that continue to add value to the overall connection to the station.

6. Evaluate: Simply adding features, can make a product unusable over time. Ensure each upgrade truly enhances and delights the core listener.

7. Customize: Enable listeners to have an experience that meets their own needs. Perhaps some members of your audience prefer to receive station updates via text message or Twitter rather than email.

8. Partner with Customers: Team up with listeners to create new experiences. This can be on-air, with social media posts, and at station events.

9. Empower: To fully please listeners, make sure frontline workers have the power to make decisions on the spot, whether it’s in studio or at a remote. Everyone in the organization should be inspired to think every day: what can I do to give more value to the customer sooner?

10. Measure: You can’t manage without a measurement tool, this includes delighting customers. In 2006, Fred Reichheld created a system for just this task – the Net Promoter Score – by asking your listeners a single question – how likely is it that you would recommend this station to a colleague or friend? The quantitative results, demonstrate how effective you’re efforts are at delighting your audience.

As we embark on the New Year, it’s a great opportunity to set goals and objectives for yourself and your team. In this era of the constantly expanding infinite dial, how will you engage and delight your listeners in 2012, so that you can provide them increased value quicker than they expect?

Helping stations engage with the listeners who matter most is a critical element of the value proposition we provide our clients. dmr’s unique 360° Listener Engagement Strategy leverages multiple personal communication platforms to delight listeners and strengthen relationships. For more information on how dmr can support your ratings and audience engagement initiatives in 2012, please , contact Andrew Curran.

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