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Build for Change: Revolutionizing Customer Engagement through Continuous Digital Innovation

ISBN: 978-1-118-93026-7
192 pages
June 2014
Build for Change: Revolutionizing Customer Engagement through Continuous Digital Innovation (1118930266) cover image
Customers have radically changed the ways they interact with businesses, and today's organizations need to adapt

Is your company prepared for the Gen D future, or is it heading toward life support? A lot of companies across the globe are going to die over the next few years, not because of macroeconomic stress, but because there is an emerging generation that is radically changing the rules of customer engagement. In Build For Change, Pegasystems CEO Alan Trefler shows exactly what companies can do to turn the coming "customerpocalypse" into one of the biggest business opportunities of the decade. The newest generation of consumers is turning customer relationship management on its head. Build For Change highlights the revolutionary changes to business, marketing, and technology practices that are needed to survive and thrive in these unforgiving times. Readers will learn how businesses are increasingly relying on new forms of customer engagement, and how one customer's experience—whether good or bad—can alter a company's reputation with the click of a mouse. With practical insight from a leader in customer engagement, this book serves as a timely wakeup call to companies that have not yet embraced the digital future.

Traditional marketing is becoming increasingly irrelevant, and businesses must become more customer-centric while taking a completely different approach to adopting and using technology. Build For Change outlines exactly what can—and must—be done to ensure sustainable success in the new digital era:

  • Relate to the new generation of consumers, and understand their preferences and demands
  • Stop obsessing about mountains of data, and instead apply business-driven continuous improvement to customer processes
  • Learn how to overcome the fatal flaws of current technology fads
  • Rethink organizational roles to drive adaptive and transformative innovation

Consumers have more options than ever before, and ensuring customer loyalty in the modern market means knowing exactly what the customer wants and how to deliver it brilliantly. Build For Change provides actionable guidance for engaging this new connected consumer.

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Foreword James Champy ix

Acknowledgments xiii

Chapter 1 Customerpocalypse 1

Great Expectations 4

It Is So Easy to Lose Customers 5

An Ominous Future 8

Are You Provoking Your Customers? 10

Welcome to the Nightmare 11

“Don’t Sell to Me!” 14

Anthropomorphism 19

“I Want to Be the Discoverer!” 22

Chapter 2 Death by Data 27

Big Data, Bigger Problem 30

Autopsy of the “Customer Service Movement” 31

Data Is Only Memory 33

Data Suicide 35

Creepy Data Gathering 38

Getting beyond Data 41

Chapter 3 Adding Judgment and Desire 43

Data in Context 44

From Black-and-White to Color 46

Adding Judgment to the Mix 47

Bringing Smart to Big 51

The Power of Hypothesis 52

Next-Best-Action 54

Adaptive Learning 57

Organizing Your Insights 59

Feedback Loops 62

Intent Goes Both Ways 62

Chapter 4 Getting It Done with Customer Processes 71

The Best Execution for Every

Customer Interaction 75

First Impressions 76

Seamless Customer Processes 79

Getting beyond Business Process Modeling 81

Crossing Lines 83

Building for Change 88

A High-Definition Panorama 90

Chapter 5 Change How You Think about Technology 93

The Business–IT Collision 96

How Computer Programming Became a Mess 97

Traditional Development 100

Zombie Systems 104

Manual Systems 105

Rogue Systems 107

Shadow IT 108

Mind the Gap? 109

The Desperation Bandwagon 110

Agile Programming to the Rescue? 112

Ready to Change? 113

Chapter 6 Liberating Your Organization 117

Hybrid Vigor for Business and IT 118

Break the Grips of Channels and Silos 121

Realign Executive Leadership 122

Redesign the Role of Customer Service 124

Rewire the CFO Function 127

Chapter 7 You Are Your Software—The Digital Imperative 131

Core Principles for Survival 134

Democratize How You Do Technology 134

Think in Layers 136

Use Analytics to Optimize Continually 141

From Dream to Reality 143

Growing Pressure 146

Your Next Steps 151

Beyond the Twilight of the Brands 154

Notes 161

Index 167

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Alan Trefler is Founder, CEO, and Chairman of Pegasystems. His awards include being named The American Business Award’s “Software CEO of the Year” for 2009 and “Public Company CEO of the Year” in 2011 by the Massachusetts Technology Leadership Council. Alan’s interest in computers originates from collegiate involvement in tournament chess, where he achieved a Master rating and was co-champion of the 1975 World Open Chess Championship. Alan holds a degree in economics and computer science from Dartmouth College.

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June 16, 2014
The Customerpocalypse is Coming. Is Your Business Ready For Revolutionary Change?

“Is your company prepared for the Gen D future, or is it heading toward life support,” asks Pegasystems CEO Alan Trefler in his new book BUILD FOR CHANGE (Wiley, June 2014).  “A lot of companies across the globe are going to die over the next few years, not because of macroeconomic stress, but because there is an emerging generation that is radically changing the rules of customer engagement.”  In BUILD FOR CHANGE, Trefler shows exactly what companies can do to turn the coming “customerpocalypse” into one of the biggest business opportunities of the decade.

First they will need to understand the new customer, his or her expectations and demands.  Then they will need to change the way they think about and use technology to achieve a smooth, integrated customer experience across all business channels.  Based on more than 30 years leading Pegasystems, and working with some of the world’s most successful companies, Trefler presents innovative solutions for addressing these issues in BUILD FOR CHANGE, including:

Understanding Gen D – The most important thing to know about thispowerful generation is that they do not want to be sold to.  They want to discover you.  If they feel manipulated or let down, they have no compunction in destroying your company through their prodigious use of the Internet and social media.

Death by Data – Big data can kill your business.  Is more necessarily better?  More data does not automatically translate into a better view of the customer.  In reality, it only tells you who the customer is and what he or she did in the past.  It’s easy to make mistakes based on data overkill.  The challenge going forward is to find a way to use data that makes sense.

Adding Judgment and Desire - When you combine data with intent, the information is put in context.  You can understand why that customer comes to you and what your business wants to achieve with that customer.  With judgment added to the mix, data can be used to figure things out in a considerably more powerful way than looking at data alone.

Getting It Done with Customer Processes – Customers want their interactions and experiences with your company to be personalized, and unique to their individual situations.  Instead of using an outside-in approach, most businesses tend to impose broken, inside-out processes on their customers.  Even the best of these, the ones that make customer experiences better than their competitors, are more about the business than the customer.  It’s time for businesses to rethink their processes completely from the customer perspective to achieve the promise of end-to-end digital transformation.

Changing How You Think about Technology – IT people are too often trapped in archaic ways of creating software and thus fail to deliver the systems that businesspeople need.  This leads to zombie systems that cripple the business or the introduction of manual and rogue systems developed to circumvent the enterprise technology.  It’s time to change how business and IT people interact, and completely rethink how the precious software that is central to digital transformation is created and evolved.  Only through alignment in their thinking and radically different approaches will they succeed in developing the needed new digital systems to enhance the customer experience and allow the organization to function at the highest level.

Liberating Your Organization – It’s essential to break the grip of channels and silos.  All processes must function in an integrated fashion across the entire organization, or the customer experience will be jagged and often unhelpful.  Driving the change to a customer centric world may benefit from new executive positions for a chief process

officer (CPO) and/or a chief customer officer (CCO).  This also means changing the CFO’s perspective on how the investment in business technology is evaluated.  Intergrating siloed business functions into to a new “Business Technology” paradigm, and powering them with a new approach to software, are prerequisites for the continuous digital innovation needed to win.

 “Your survival as a business depends on whether you can and are willing to change your thinking.  The up-and-coming Gen D does not care whether you live or die.  But you can have them as customers, as long as you respond to them in ways that are unlike anything you have done before,” says Trefler.

Filled with examples of highly successful companies like American Express and Lush  as well as companies that long ago faded away, BUILD FOR CHANGE is a hands-on guide for any business that wants to flourish despite the coming customerpocalypse.  Trefler’s bold and timely insights are a wake-up call to leaders in all industries, both large and small, in the U.S. and abroad.

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