All posts by Sean Kennedy

Creating Customers and Having Purpose

I recently posted on LinkedIn some thoughts on Peter Drucker’s famous statement, “There is only one valid purpose of a corporation: to create a customer.” My beliefs in customer sovereignty (meaning that customers have the freedom to take their business wherever they want) and in customers experiencing value from your offerings as the ultimate indicator of future success, led me leave an excellent job, company, and colleagues to start my own business. But it takes constant effort to keep focused on adhering to those beliefs, just as it takes constant effort to keep a company focused on its customers.

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Journeys in Journey Mapping

I have had a journey with journey mapping. Through it, I have noticed different types of customer journey maps requiring different inputs and resulting in different outputs/impact over time. I think that there is a time and place for each type of journey map and that it is worth categorizing the kind you’re using or creating in light of what you intend to achieve. I also believe that customer journey maps (and personas and scenarios) if kept as “living assets”, can help give all your teams “line of sight” to your customers, and that they are a powerful catalyst for organizations looking to reinvent themselves as truly customer-centered and empathetic.

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Overcoming the “Achilles Heel” of Agile

I recently noticed a former colleague gain a Disciplined Agile certification. In my congratulatory message I also indicated my interest in learning more. In addition to that conversation, he also pointed me towards a series of meetups and LinkedIn articles led by Ivar Jacobson around “Essence for Agility”. I won’t go into all the aspects of that, but I do want to share some of the thinking that it inspired me to do about how I’ve been been working and why that has been a solution to Achilles’ Heel of Agile Adoption.

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Who is a Customer?

The definition of a customer seems so obvious in B2C relationships that we often don’t bother to define it. Amidst the complexity of B2B relationships, this lack of precision can lead to all kinds of confusion and lack of clarity as points of view from different functions and lines of business of the company compete for resources. A solid definition of a customer helps companies understand their purpose and execute towards it in alignment with each other.

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3 Necessities for Becoming a Repeatedly Innovative Organization

The article below was originally published in June 2018 and was based on a previous article from November 2017. Over the course of 2020 I had the opportunity to return to these ideas, refine them, apply them in new situations, and learn a bunch more from my experiences and also the study of others’. I intend to revisit and provide updates and expansions to some of the ideas in this post over the course of 2021 – and beyond: learning is a lifelong activity and learning is at the heart of innovation.

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Anchoring Core Values

In the 2+ years after having these revelations and writing them down (on medium), my two “anchoring core values” remain strong guides for me. They are known to my family and my colleagues – which also helps to provide some external pressure, when needed, to stay true to them. I believe it is worthwhile for everyone to look inside themselves and uncover their own “anchoring core values” – if you find that mine resonate with you, you won’t be the first, as I think they’re fairly universal.

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APIs for Fun and Profit

This is a republishing of an article that I’ve had around in few places, from the old company blog, to medium, and probably somewhere else. It is good for me to review from time to time the importance and impact of APIs in creating a true customer-centered business. We can probably never say it enough because the “techie” nature of APIs makes them an unusual topic for customer experience and business leaders. But the ultimate users of APIs are humans and the ultimate purpose for them is to facilitate value creation.

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