NPE2012 lesson: Don’t take clients for granted

Wylie Royce

Published: April 13, 2012 6:00 am ET

Over the past two-plus years, much has been predicted, written and anticipated about NPE2012. It would appear that the show was quite a success, but just as important, it was a business lesson for us all.

First and foremost, if Chicago had not given SPI a reason to search for a new venue, Orlando would have never entered the picture and NPE would have continued to be in Chicago.

The economy was in a meltdown, exhibitors were canceling in droves, SPI was making huge concessions to keep the show alive, and Chicago pretty much continued on, business as usual. At the end of the day, Chicago was complacent toward SPI, its customer.

Unfortunately, every day we are all guilty of this same business sin to one extent or another. We have a base loading of customers who we believe are truly happy with us, and after a time, we tend to take their business for granted. To win our customers’ business, we raise their level of expectations above the value they are receiving from our competitors. But that elevated level must be met or exceeded every day, because if we don’t deliver, we put our business at risk.

We saw this happen to an entire industry 30 years ago. The U.S. auto industry had set the bar pretty low for quality, reliability, etc. What happened? Japan entered the market offering and delivering higher expectations. The U.S. auto industry opened the door, and will likely never return to its “glory days.”

Moving the show, just like changing suppliers, can be a huge risk in many ways, so given that all things are equal, the incumbent supplier typically has the home field advantage. Had McCormick Place operations not fallen below expectations, the search would never have started.

So the lesson learned? None of us, no matter how successful we may be, can ever become complacent about our customers, because if we do, there is a good chance that at some point in time, we will be in the same unfortunate position of being on the outside looking in.

Wylie Royce

Royce Colors

SPI National Board


Comments

NPE2012 lesson: Don’t take clients for granted

Wylie Royce

Published: April 13, 2012 6:00 am ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story

Market Reports

2014 Injection Molding Industry Report

GROWTH, OPPORTUNITY IN SIGHT FOR INJECTION MOLDERS IN 2014

In the wake of the economic turbulence earlier in this decade, molders today find themselves in much better shape. Molders are gaining a competitive advantage by investing in people, equipment and seeking inroads into new markets on a global scale.

Growth in the injection molding industry is going to be driven by low financing costs and a continued move to reshore some business.

Learn more

Shale Gas Market - Analysis of North American Region

This report highlights the impact of shale-based natural gas on the North American plastics market and features an in-depth analysis of production trends in the United States during 2013 and a forecast for 2014 and beyond.

Learn more

Injection Molders Market Report & Ranking 2014

This special package contains our 132-page 2014 Market Report on the Injection Molding segment and our exclusive 2014 RANKINGS database of 500+ Injection Molders for a discounted package price.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

September 10, 2014 - September 12, 2014Plastics Caps & Closures 2014

January 14, 2015 - January 14, 2015Plastics in Automotive

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

More Events