They’ve put a beautiful Christmas tree in the foyer of our local leisure centre. It stands almost three metres tall, complete with the usual baubles and wrapped presents underneath. The tree would be perfect if it wasn’t for the temporary barrier that surrounds it on four sides, (you know the kind, the type with the expanding elastic you see if you ever queue at a bank anymore). Oh and the sign which reads, “Do not touch the Christmas display. Thank you for your cooperation.”
The point of the tree should be to deliver joy. Not much joy for the three years olds (who can’t read the sign of course) and have a go at touching it. Or their mothers, who now have to yell at them loudly not to touch the tree, while they wait in line for coffee or an entry ticket to swimming lessons.
Every business decision you make should be prefaced with the question. Who is this for? If you’re doing something to please investors or board members, your suppliers or partners, customers or staff, make sure your decision pleases the right people.
If you really are setting out to delight your customers and not just putting a tick in the box, go stand in their shoes. Once you see the world through their eyes you’ll know who you’re choosing to please.
Image by Geoanne Millares.