Michael Corleone says to his father’s consigliere, Tom Hagen in the ever remarkable movie, The Godfather:
“Tom, don’t let anybody kid you. It is all personal, every bit of business. Every piece of thing every man has to eat every day of his life is personal. They call it business. OK. But it’s personal as hell. You know where I learned that from? The Don. My old man. The Godfather.”
It is always personal, even business is personal.
One of the most confusing distinctions we have created in the business world is that between the business to customer [B2C] and business to business [B2B] consumer.
It is argued that because these two groups of customers are working towards different outcomes, efficiency vs. entertainment, expertise vs. enjoyment, that they also have different motivations.
The B2B consumer is expected to make decisions based on logic, while the B2C customer is thought to be driven by emotions.
Corporates [B2B] are formal, methodical and whereas customers [B2C] are emotional and unplanned.
The result is that we often forget to treat the business customer with empathy and the retail customer with respect.
The people we hope to serve are not just defined by the title that is printed on their business cards.
CEO’s and Board chairpersons have just as many problems and fears, hopes and dreams as the next person.
A corner office does not strip someone of their humanity. Our marketing should not be designed to do that either.
It is personal, it is always personal.