Friday, November 23, 2007

Customer Relationship Management System

Customer Relationship Management Systems is a tactical and strategic tool. If used correctly, this tool can forecast trends and help a company with the top and bottom lines. Today, many businesses do not look the same as they may have many years ago. They have definitely left their core competency to move onto something more profitable. The internet and information technology have made that possible.

General Motors and eBay are two companies who have reduced focus from their original purpose to reflect financing. They have both learned that keeping the customer in debt through interest bearing finance for longer periods of time is more beneficial to the business. Another example is from the best seller Good to Great. This book lists Kimberly Clark as a successful company that thrived in a dying industry. This company moved from being a supplier of coated paper to consumer goods like Huggies and Kleenex.

How did these companies transform to this kind of success? I believe it was from a keen insight into customer relationship management. Even at its primitive form, before current software availability, the astute business leaders recognized the trend in the market place. It wasn’t hard for the visionaries at places like GM, eBay and Kimberly-Clark to see the potential for huge profits. Like many explorers and adventurers, each of the CEOs and other leaders received harsh criticism and ne’er do wells from peers and medial alike. Many engrained in tradition expressed disappointment. The leaders were left with dreams, plans, execution and the true possibilities displayed in sales history, demographics, profiles, and shifts in buying trends.

This CRM uses sales force automation to expedite sales and assist the sales force, customer service and support to align sales with suppliers, and marketing management and analysis to find the market. These interact to align the business with customers’ needs and meeting them more promptly at the point of sale.

With evolving technology and high tech consumers, we can expect many more companies to leave their original core competencies to ones that earn them more money with fewer costs. Much business is growing on-line. Without the proper risk of visionaries, and data used properly from CRM a company may die in its antiquity.

About the Author: Jeffrey W. Bennett is the Founder and director of LayMentor Ministries. This ministry is dedicated to training church and other volunteer leaders to be more effective. Jeff speaks and writes on similar concepts taught in most MBA courses and makes it easy to adapt to all leadership levels. The volunteer drives our churches and communities and the impact can be amazing. For PowerPoint presentations of this article, visit http://www.jeffreywbennett.com/index_files/resources.htm He is also the author of the Missionary/Adventure novel Under the Lontar Palm available on line at http://www.jeffreywbennett.com/ or in major and online bookstores.

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