Is CRM Doomed to Success?


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Today’s CRM is both complex and complicated.

It is complex because we know know that it is made up of many interconnected parts. This has led to the common view of CRM consisting of a series of capabilities containing related components (processes, information, technologies, work routines, jobs, measures, etc), that create value when used. It is also complicated bacause we know that each of the components in a capability need to be developed to the next level together if it is to create more value.

The failures of so many CRM projects in the past was due to not understanding this complexitý and complicatedness. To just implementing new CRM systems without much thought to new processes or any thought at all to new jobs.

If CRM is so difficult and has a record of failing, you would think that would make managers tasked with implementing it a little more careful. Perhaps even to implement it initially as a management experiment or pilot project, to make sure that it has been designed properly and that it works as intended, before committing the business to the full costs of implementation. If you thought that you would be wrong. Very wrong. CRM is still being implemented in ‘big bang’ projects as though it was a 100% racing certainty. And because so much is riding on CRM’s success, ways are being found to declare it a success no matter how disastrous the results. Or whether better results could have been obtained from a different implementation.

In other words, CRM is being doomed to success!

And this problem doesn’t just afflict CRM or business. It applies just as much to government public services as well. An article on ‘Science Rules OK, Running Societies the Rational Way’ in a recent New Scientist points out that the same unscientific approach to management afflicts government and the public services they provide, just as much as it does business. Politicians implement their pet projects and then declare success before the first results are in. And then stick with the projects even in the face of strong evidence that they are not working, or even that they are doing harm.

Surely there is a better way.

What do you think? Should we run business through the scientific method? Or should we just do the things we were going to do anyway and declare them a success immediately?

Post a comment and get the conversation going.

Graham Hill
Independent CRM Consultant
Interim CRM Manager

Graham Hill (Dr G)
Business Troubleshooter | Questioning | Thoughtful | Industrious | Opinions my own | Connect with me on LinkedIn


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