We had the March V-Club session at Vodafone Boardroom on Wednesday 25 March.
The guest presenter was Eli Weir from Air New Zealand Innovation ventures. I met Eli about 3 weeks ago when I visited his Auckland office with Deryk Whyte from NZTA and really enjoyed the presentation he made to us, which was called "Eli's Greatest Hits".
So I invited him to the March V-Club session and had the privilege of listening to that fantastic presentation again. While I had seen it once, listening it to the second time helped to highlight couple of important things, that's really worth sharing.
1. It's not about "You".
This is a huge mistake we all do. We get so focused on designing and perfecting a product or service, we totally loose the plot about "who" that product is meant to serve, the "Guy Who Pay's" for that God damn product or service. Time and time again, companies sink money dreaming up and making stuff that "they" think the customer need, while the investment and effort should be really focused on uncovering the spoken and un-spokenneeds of the customer. A good example is Vodafone website. While they have spent millions of dollars on all kinds of gizmos on the site which I really don't care about, it can't give me the most basic thing I expect from the website; ability to Sign-on Just Once to check Mobile and Home Broadband accounts. (at the moment, you have to login twice to do this which is a pain in the backside).
2. Be Lazy
Rather than keeping focus on providing value to customers, people ... especially those of us in the IT Industry, try to re-invent the wheel all the time. When you are designing a solution for a customer, break it down to components and see what can be outsourced to specialist providers, rather than trying to build the whole solution yourself. A very good example is the IT Infrastructure space, where people still waste time and money buying their own hardware, while you can easily solve the problem by using the Infrastructure As A Service model.
Thanks to ...
1. Eli and his lovely wife Dawn for coming down to Welly for this session
2. Brent Spicer from Vodafone for providing the boardroom and drinks