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Wednesday, October 13, 2004it doesn't always make sense to listen to the customers particularly especially if innovation is more important for a business than linear product improvement. Juniper executive says,"Customers will take you down a status quo path every time. They are after linear improvements. Customers can help you do that. But if you want to hit an inflection point and get non-linear improvement, the worst thing you can do is listen to a customer about what they want. Customers can only think about solutions for problems they know about." In juniper,everybody's job here is to wake up every day and innovate because 100% of our revenues come from innovation. Five years from now 100% of our revenues will come from products that aren't here now. If we're not constantly innovating, our very survival is at stake." This is brilliant advice,if your strategy is pursuing breakthrough innovation! In practical life business may be focused on linear, incremental improvements in some areas while pursuing breakthrough innovations in other areas. Knowing when to decide and pursue your own ideas and solutions and when to talk to customers about their needs is a tough choice - but an important one at that!!
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