Accelerated Consumer Interactions Change How Companies View Us

The dot-com bubble may be receding into corporate history, but it is still reshaping supply chains and will continuing to do so for years to come.  Companies such as Amazon . . . have shifted the focus from delivering products to delivering on customer needs — Ken Cottrill, Harvard Business ReviewSupply Chain Strategy newsletter, October 2005

The description is a good one but the question is begged: What is inherent to dot-coms that favors such a shift in corporate perspective?  A key factor, I would argue, is that e-business attempts to insinuate itself into a person’s daily routines: ‘convenience’ means not just logistical convenience (allowing a person to buy with a few clicks) but intellectual convenience (allowing a person to buy without focusing as much energy on a purchase as s/he would in a store).

Though the process may appear as a triumph of consumerism, it is equally a triumph of the individual: that is, as Cottrill states, the needs to serve the purchaser, rather than the need to serve the product, is increasingly becoming a focus of businesses everywhere.


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