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Build for Change

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Build for Change

Revolutionizing Customer Engagement through Continuous Digital Innovation


15 min read
10 take-aways
Audio & text

What's inside?

Generation Y may hate your firm, but it’s Generation D you should worry about. Get ‘em mad and they’ll wipe you out.

Editorial Rating



  • Innovative
  • Applicable


Is your company ready for the coming “customerpocalypse” – the wholesale commercial wipeout of companies by angry customers armed with social media? If not, beware that generation D customers will happily trash your firm if you displease them. Author Alan Trefler says the only way to deal with the threat of this looming disaster is by revolutionizing how you relate to customers. Most companies need to transform their business processes and technology systems radically. Trefler’s “call to action” is clever, including the opening graphic: a tombstone reading, “R.I.P. Blockbuster.” His book is also scary. He discusses the increasing irrelevancy of brands and of customer loyalty – the two holiest grails of business for most marketing professionals. getAbstract recommends Trefler’s predictions and tactics to CEOs, start-ups, customer-service professionals, consultants and entrepreneurs who recognize the need to keep pushing, updating and changing in order to deliver the most satisfying customer experiences possible – before you get tweeted to death on Twitter.


The Customer Now Rules

In the past, companies ran their own marketplace activities and entirely controlled their products and services. Today, customers rule. Numerous factors have aligned to put the emerging generation of consumers in charge, most notably the power of technology and the Internet, which provide comprehensive product data instantly and enable consumers to buy anything any time, and to comment on everything all the time.

The millennial generation – also called generation Y – runs commerce today. This generation followed generation X, which in turn followed the baby boomers. Members of gen Y grew up in a fully digital world. They are becoming the world’s biggest consumer group. They have huge expectations, are extremely demanding and have little patience for companies that displease them. If generation Y doesn’t want what you offer, doesn’t like how you operate or feels negative about your products or services, its consumers will quickly call public attention to every failing. Often this means enthusiastically wreaking havoc on the organizations they target.

Many victims could appear under that “rest in peace” sign, including Circuit City and Borders...

About the Author

Alan Trefler, founder, CEO and chairman of Pegasystems, was the co-champion of the 1975 World Open Chess Championship. The Massachusetts Technology Leadership Council named him 2011’s Public Company CEO of the Year.

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    S. L. 4 years ago
    good change
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    P. G. getAbstract 8 years ago
    A must read for anybody responsible for marketing and market strategy.
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    J. P. 9 years ago
    Great book!