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Thursday, October 20, 2005

Those strange creatures called clients

Translation of Esas extrañas criaturas llamadas clientes by Sr Martínez published in ESTRATEgA on 19-Oct-2005.

Human beings, when they become clients, don't stop being human, so it shouldn't surprise us that they prefer:

- pleasure over pain
- the known over the unknown
- the cheap over the expensive
- the sweet over the bitter
- the good over the bad
- the safe over that which brings uncertainties
- that which doesn't make them wait unnecessarily
- the simple over the complicated
- that which they don't have to remember
- that which is not irreversible
- that which others want/have/do (or more of it)
- that which brings them closer to how they want to appear
- the positive over the negative

Obviously, there are exceptions and such creatures, in spite of themselves, are able to deny themselves one good thing if another is sufficiently attractive.

It is not always easy to bear these things in mind. For example, futurologists, gurus, consultants, entrepreneurs and writers of business plans sometimes prefer to forget the above for the lure of the beauty of technology.

On the other hand, we mustn't forget that the products/systems that exist and against which are may be competing have already overcome two difficult trials, which makes them more robust than they might appear:

  • they have survived their 'baptism of fire' in the market place. (Original text was 'prueba del nueve' which translates as 'casting out of nines', a method of checking the results of a mathematical calculation.)

  • they have overcome countless compromises or trade-offs in the 'back-room'

This might sound like the attitude of a 'stuck in the mud', but everything is always changing. It is the direction of the change that can be chosen at any time.


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