Customer Evangelists Cover Your Eyes

David Wolfe says enough with all this customer centric rhetoric already.

It has become fashionable to single out customers as the most important stakeholder. Customer centricity is a flawed concept. It pays patronizing homage to one category of stakeholders at the potential expense of other stakeholders. There is nothing neither noble nor pragmatic about being customer centric.
Rather than holding out one stakeholder group or another as the most important stakeholder group, fully developed Firms of Endearment (FoEs) give attention to the well being of the entire economic ecosystem in which they operate. While service to each stakeholder group is important, without a healthy economic ecosystem all are in jeopardy.
Peak performing companies will increasingly not be shareholder centric, nor customer centric, nor employee centric, nor self-centric. Their business models will be more holistic, more systems centric. The attention given stakeholders will be proportionate to a stakeholder groups’ contribution to the well being of the economic ecosystem.

Things are moving so fast today, we now have heroic heretics like Wolfe denouncing new paradigms like customer centricism before many marketers have even heard of them, much less put them into practice.



About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.