Narrator : Listen to part of a lecture in a Business Class
Professor :Ok, as we’ve talked about a key aspect of running a successful business is knowing, um, getting a good sense of what the customer actually wants, andhow they
perceive your product. So with that in mind, I want to describe a verysimple method of researching customer preference, and it is becomingincreasingly common, it's called----
MBWA----which stands for managing bywandering around. Now, MBWA, that's not the most technical sounding nameyou've ever heard, but it describes the process pretty accurately.
Here is how itworks.
Basically, Um, the idea is that business owners or business managers just go out and actually talk to their customers, and learn more about how well the business is
serving their needs, and try to see what the customer experiences,because that's a great way to discover for yourself, how your product isperceived, what the strengths and
weaknesses are, you know, how to you canimproved it that sort of thing, you know Dortans, they make soup and canvegetables and such. Well, the head of the company, had Dortans
’ toppedexecutives walk around supermarkets, um, asking shoppers what they thoughtof Dortans’ soup, and he use the data to make changes to the company'sproduct, I mean, when
Dortans of all the companies, embraces something asradical as MBWA, it really show you how popular the theory has become, yes,Lisa?
Student A :But this is dangerous to base decisions on information from a small sample of people? Is it large scale market research safer getting data on a lot of people?
Professor :That's a good question, and well I don't want to pretend that W… MBWA is some sort of, um, replacement for other methods of customer research. Now,the market
research data definitely can give you a good idea of, um, of the bigpicture, but MBWA is really useful kind of filling in the blanks, you know, gettinga good underground sense
of how you products you use, and how peopleneed respond to them, and Yes, the numbers of opinion you get is small so you do need to be careful, but, good business managers
will tell you that the big fear they have an.. .and one of the most frequent problems they come across is well becoming out of touch with what their customers really want and
need,you know surveys and market research stuff like that, they can only tell you somuch about what the customers actually want in their day-to-day lives.Managing by wandering
around on the other hand, that get you in there giveyou a good sense about what customers needs so. So when use combinationthen, MBWA and market research were the powerful
tools. Oh, here is anotherexample for you, um, see you executive for a clothing manufacture. It was, um,Lken, Lken jeans you know, they went in work in the store for a few
days,selling Lken's cloths. Now that give them a very different idea about theirproduct, they saw how people responded to it; they could go up to customersin the store asked
questions about it, yes Mike?
Student B :Well, I would think that a lot of customers will be bothered by, you know, if I'm shopping, I don't know if I want some business representatives coming up tome
and asking me questions, it's.. It's like when I got phone call at home frommarketing researchers, I just hang up them .
Professor:Oh, well, it's certainly true that well no one likes getting calls at home from market researchers or people like that, but I will tell you something.
Mostcustomers have exact opposite reaction when they comes to MBWA. Now,don't ask me why, because I really have no idea, but the fact is that customerstend to respond really
well to MBWA, which is the key reason for a success.
In fact, the techniques of MBWA works so well, they have actually been extended to all kinds of different contacts like politics for instance, Um, a fewyears back, the
major of Botamore, Um.. I can guess its name is Shapher orsomething like that. Anyway, he decided that the best way to serve the peopleof the city, of his city, was actually
get out there in it and experience the thingsthat they experienced, so he right around the city in, you know, all parts of it,and he see all the prattles; he see how the trash
was sometimes, um, not pickup but off side the street and then they go back to the office and they writethese memos, and these memos to stuff about the problems he had seen,
andhow they needed to be fixed, you know that sort of thing, but the thing is he gotall the information just by going around and seeing the different Botamoreneighborhoods and
talking to the people in them, and he called it--- smallpolitics, we'd call it MBWA, or just, playing good customer service.