We use the word “insurgents” to define companies with strong Founder’s Mentality, because those companies are literally at war with their industries on behalf of underserved customers. They’re on a mission to give customers better service or better products, or both. That’s why the company exists and why an obsession with the front line is one of the key elements of the Founder’s Mentality. Losing touch with the voices from the front line is one of the biggest risks insurgents face as they scale.
Recently, I talked about this on a podcast with my colleague Rob Markey, who is just as obsessed with customers and the front line as any company founder. Rob is a leading expert on customer loyalty and the coauthor, with Fred Reichheld, of The Ultimate Question 2.0—the definitive book on the Net Promoter System®.
Rob’s regular Net Promoter System podcast covers a wide range of topics on customers and employees, and features guests from loyalty-leading companies—many of which are led by their founders or exhibit strong Founder’s Mentality. It was a privilege to be a guest on the podcast.
It was also a lot of fun because Rob and I often tackled the same issue from slightly different angles. He and Fred initially focused their research on customer loyalty, because companies can’t maintain extraordinary levels of sustainable, profitable and organic growth if they’re not earning the loyalty of their customers. But Rob and Fred quickly realized the corollary: Companies can’t earn the loyalty of their customers if they don’t have employees who are enthusiastic, energetic and creative about doing so. For that reason, much of Rob’s recent work has focused on employee Net Promoter System (eNPS).
And Rob also works on many of the same issues I do—helping larger companies that have lost the voices from their front line figure out how to reconnect with it, creating a steady stream of customer feedback to all levels of the organization, and inspiring action on behalf of customers who are at the heart of the insurgent mission.
One more thing: As you might expect, Rob would not be pleased if I failed to ask for customer feedback. So once you’ve listened to our conversation, please click here and take a short Net Promoter survey to let him know what you thought. You can be sure he’ll share that feedback with me.