Capturing the Voices in Business Sustainability


“If there is any one secret of success, it lies in the ability to get the other person’s point of view and see things from his angle, as well as from your own.” Henry Ford, Ford Motor Company

Servicing the customer is not a new concept to business sustainability; however, incorporating consumer insights directly into product and service development is a growing business trend. This shift is explored in greater detail in the HBR Blog Network post, The Five Cs of Opportunity Identification, which hones in on consumer frustrations as an extremely ripe area for innovation.

This post reminds our sustainability consulting practice that the consumer experience is a direct engagement opportunity for not only product enhancement but for new product development. Rather than viewing negative feedback as a risk, we find that today’s business sustainability leaders are instead encouraging this engagement as a catalyst in the idea generation process. The true differentiators are building an open dialog with this key stakeholder group.

“Focus insight generation on the ultimate benefits that customers derive from a product or service – this will help you select higher-value technology projects. Also, train your R&D team to understand business objectives and surface gaps between the current product portfolio and future ambitions.” -CEB Research and Technology Views

Article by Julie Urlaub, Founder and Managing Partner at Taiga Company; appearing courtesy 3BL Media.

About Author

Walter’s contributions to CleanTechies over the past 4 years have been instrumental in growing the publications social media channels via his ongoing editorial and data driven strategies. He is the founder and managing director of Sunflower Tax, a renewable energy tax and finance consultancy based in San Diego, California. Active in the San Diego clean technology community, participating in events sponsored by CleanTech San Diego, EcoTopics, and Cleantech Open San Diego, Walter has also been a presenter at numerous California Center for Sustainability (CCSE) programs. He currently serves as an adjunct professor at the University of San Diego School of Law where he teaches a course on energy taxation and policy.

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