More highlights on Peter Drucker's book The Five Most Important Questions You Will Ever Ask About Your Organization. See posts last week if you missed those "Pondering Points."
To get right down to what your customer values, you just need to know what he/she needs and wants. Yet, the question really has to be answered by the customer. Trying to figure it out yourself is guess-wor.
Drucker recommended that you go about finding these answers in a systematic quest. He used this approack as a professor and would call a random sample of 50+ students a year who graduated 10 years ealier. He would ask questions such as, "looking back what did we contribute in this school? What is still important to you? What shoud we do better? What should we stop doing?" He would then adjust his teaching based upon this knowledge.
You might begin with your assumptions but then truly find out what the customers want and determine the gap and what you are going to do about it. You must listen to your customer, determine the gap, adjust, deliver and the evaluate by starting the process all over again. Jim Collins, an editor of the new release of this book, would suggest his Hedgehog concept from his book Good-to-Great.
Drucker points out the need to have a written plan that includes a evaluation and correction process.
To that end....