If customers are your company’s biggest asset, who are they?

Well-known business author, Ian Brooks, defines: “A customer is anyone who uses our products and services to fulfil their needs and wants to enable them to be more successful”. Then, who are your customers? Let’s do an exercise. There are 4 different components of this definition: 1. A customer is anyone who uses our products and services. – List the products and services your business, team or department provides 2. To fulfill their needs and wants – There is a difference between needs and wants. As a customer, most of our decisions are based on wants.  There are only 4 needs in this world: air, water, shelter, food. We need food, but do we need gourmet food, do we need to go to a restaurant to eat, do we need organic food, do we need rib eye steak, do we need Krispy Kreme donuts.  No. Most of our decisions are made on wants. What are the things your customer’s WANT from the products and services of your company? To have fun, ego, status, peace of mind, etc.  You (as an internal customer [employee]) want what the work can give you … (to support your family, a good lifestyle, no politics, no stress, fun, supportive environment, new friends, improved lifestyle, recognition…) 3. To enable them to be more successful Let’s define success – imagine that you are 90 years old, sitting by the ocean, reminiscing about your life.  What has made it a successful and fulfilling life? Happiness, friends, family, good health, able to do things and experience things in a way you wanted to, your contribution to society and to other people, financial security, etc. Do other people have the same ideas of success?  Are they just like you?  Are they ‘customers’?  Are you a ‘customer’? 4. So who is dependent on you for their success? So based on this definition, who are your customers?