Know the customer but know you’re not the customer

20070209inc In the January ’07 issue of Inc. Magazine, there’s an article written by Thomas Stemberg, the founder of Staples.  He said something that is right in line with my recent post "How’s the view from inside the bottle?"

Stemberg says "know your customer" is the most profound lesson in the business canon.  He goes on to follow up that thought with "but never assume that you are the customer."

There is nothing insignificant about that distinction.

Download StembergInc.pdf

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2 comments on “Know the customer but know you’re not the customer

  1. So true, Drew. As a matter of fact, I teach my clients to assume that they’re not thier customer/client. That way, they have to always be thinking about communicating with people outside themselves.

  2. Dawud,

    I think this is one of the toughest lessons for clients to learn. How do you help them see the light?


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