Product details

By continuing to use our site you consent to the use of cookies as described in our privacy policy unless you have disabled them.
You can change your cookie settings at any time but parts of our site will not function correctly without them.
Management article
-
Reference no. R00108
Published by: Harvard Business Publishing
Published in: "Harvard Business Review", 2000

Abstract

Major business trends such as deregulation, globalization, technological convergence, and the rapid evolution of the Internet have transformed the roles that companies play in their dealings with other companies. Business practitioners and scholars talk about alliances, networks, and collaboration among companies. But managers and researchers have largely ignored the agent that is most dramatically transforming the industrial system as we know it: the consumer. In a market in which technology-enabled consumers can now engage themselves in an active dialogue with manufacturers - a dialogue that customers can control - companies have to recognize that the customer is becoming a partner in creating value. In this article, authors C K Prahalad and Venkatram Ramaswamy demonstrate how the shifting role of the consumer affects the notion of a company's core competencies. Where previously, businesses learned to draw on the competencies and resources of their business partners and suppliers to compete effectively, they must now include consumers as part of the extended enterprise, the authors say. Harnessing those customer competencies won't be easy. At a minimum, managers must come to grips with four fundamental realities in co-opting customer competence: they have to engage their customers in an active, explicit, and ongoing dialogue; mobilize communities of customers; manage customer diversity; and engage customers in cocreating personalized experiences. Companies will also need to revise some of the traditional mechanisms of the marketplace - pricing and billing systems, for instance - to account for their customers' new role.

About

Abstract

Major business trends such as deregulation, globalization, technological convergence, and the rapid evolution of the Internet have transformed the roles that companies play in their dealings with other companies. Business practitioners and scholars talk about alliances, networks, and collaboration among companies. But managers and researchers have largely ignored the agent that is most dramatically transforming the industrial system as we know it: the consumer. In a market in which technology-enabled consumers can now engage themselves in an active dialogue with manufacturers - a dialogue that customers can control - companies have to recognize that the customer is becoming a partner in creating value. In this article, authors C K Prahalad and Venkatram Ramaswamy demonstrate how the shifting role of the consumer affects the notion of a company's core competencies. Where previously, businesses learned to draw on the competencies and resources of their business partners and suppliers to compete effectively, they must now include consumers as part of the extended enterprise, the authors say. Harnessing those customer competencies won't be easy. At a minimum, managers must come to grips with four fundamental realities in co-opting customer competence: they have to engage their customers in an active, explicit, and ongoing dialogue; mobilize communities of customers; manage customer diversity; and engage customers in cocreating personalized experiences. Companies will also need to revise some of the traditional mechanisms of the marketplace - pricing and billing systems, for instance - to account for their customers' new role.

Related