Thriving on Goodwill

Artwork by the author. © Photography by Rawpixel

Dr. Olaf Hermans, Relationship Engineer, co-authors this article.

What does “Moving forward together” mean?

Facing a shared enemy like the coronavirus makes most of us gather around a shared purpose to defeat it.

Because a unified view of the concept is still lacking.

A review of Becker and Jaakkola’s 2020 Research Paper

© Artwork by the author, photograph by DragonImages

The Search for a Unified View on CX

While many companies and organizations claim to have the universal definition of customer experience, the reality is different. This article reviews Larissa Becker and Elina Jaakkola’s (2020) research, which examined 136 articles about CX in eight literature fields. [1]

In my article “Customer Experience: A Tale of Two Opposing Views” (2019), I explained that despite a consensus between practitioners and scholars that a favorable CX positively impacts business outcomes, the CX concept remains foggy.

One looks at CX through one of…

© Picture by Halfpoint

Karthiga Ratnam co-authored this article.

Karthiga is a Wicked7 working group member, and Jef is a founding advisor. The Wicked7 is an open collaboration project founded by Christian Sarkar and Philip Kotler.

Is nature dying? Our consumption-driven economies are certainly trying to speed up the process. We should remind ourselves of that fact every single day, and then act. Or is it in our nature to not care unless we suffer?


It is amazing how many definitions Merriam-Webster offers for the word ‘nature’ and how they vary from the inherent character or constitution of persons and things up to the…

And why businesses, especially start-ups, must play a crucial role in sustainability

Image by the author. © Photography by twenty20photos.

The world cries for innovation to tackle sustainability challenges and expects entrepreneurs and researchers to do the job.

“To put it bluntly, since there will not be much development money over the next decade, there had better be a lot of good ideas” (Summers, 1991). In 1973, Peter Drucker wrote: “Every single social and global issue in our day is a business opportunity in disguise” (as cited in Drucker Institute, 2011).

The first quote from Lawrence Summers, then Chief Economist of the World Bank, is a cry from one faced with social and global issues for ideas to tackle those…

Friction as a key ingredient for progress

“Du choc des idées jaillit la lumière”¹ wrote the 17th-century French poet and critic Nicolas Boileau. What he meant was that enlightenment comes when ideas collide. Confronting different points of view can lead to the emergence of an innovative or enriched vision.

The collision of ideas, opinions, beliefs, assumptions, practices -the ingredients that make up organizational culture- is a conflict. According to Carl Jung, “a conflict requires a real solution and necessitates a third thing in which the opposites can unite. Here the logic of the intellect usually fails, for in a logical antithesis, there is no third.”²

Robbins and…

Introduction: Made in Belgium.

On November 17, 1909, the Belgium-born Dr. Leo H. Baekeland explained Bakelite at the Franklin Institute (Baekeland, 1910). PlasticsEurope, the Association of Plastics Manufacturers, describes Bakelite as the first real synthetic and mass-produced plastic (PlasticsEurope, 2020). However, plastic is a form of fossil fuel since natural resources like gas and crude oil are its core ingredients (Joyce, 2019).

In 2014, the plastic’s share of global oil consumption was six percent. In 2050, it will be twenty percent, and the weight of plastic in the oceans will be larger than that of all fish living in them (World Economic Forum, 2016)…

“For in our shrinking globe, man can ill afford cultural illiteracy.” ─ Edward T. Hall (1976)

Your customer is a person who has feelings, hopes, fears, and dreams. Duh! Customers with emotions and feelings. Do you want a relationship with her, or do you only market to a persona or a segment?

In their book Obsessed, Marc Bresseel and Renout van Hove provide a mantra for the marketer and, by extension, for all passionate about being other-focused: “I intend to have empathy.” It is one’s passion that allows for the continuous repetition of those words that help focus on understanding who the customer is and why she behaves the way she acts.

The definition of empathy…

A short read for CEOs that demystifies today’s communications

Edited by Olaf Hermans, Ph.D., Relationship Engineering

Your company ─ and I define your company as a brand, all its artifacts, and all people representing your brand ─ continuously sends out signals. You are probably unaware of the majority of those signals and even more oblivious to what perceptions they form in the minds of people who happen to notice them. However, you want to send people, and let us narrow that group down to potential and existing customers, meaningful messages in the hope they will positively engage. Positive engagement is…

Challenges for Companies and Individuals: Disunity or Global Solidarity

Edited by Linden R. Brown, Ph.D.

“Those who live for their company will emerge from this crisis victoriously, those who live from their company will lose,” posted Belgian economist Geert Noels on March 23, 2020, on LinkedIn. This statement can have different interpretations. One is to regard it as a call to pursue financial profit at any cost. The other is to view it as a call for engagement and contribution. I prefer to believe Geert Noels means engaged employees when referring to those living for their company. If so, he…

Jef Teugels

Triply stainable business imagineer. Energy explorer at the edges of customer behavior, organizational readiness, and exponential technologies. Epicurean.

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