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29 March 2012

When faced with the many challenges that the current market place creates, as a company it is important that we are constantly thinking of new ways to better our own value-proposition, therefore differentiating ourselves from our competitors and ultimately looking to make it easier for customers to do business with us.

At NHP, we are fortunate to be in a position where we are on track to post a year of positive growth, and while in part this can be attributed to the necessity of our core product, electricity, internally we try not to lose sight of certain business principles that any company seeking success must acknowledge.

So what are these principles?  In truth, there are many elements that help make a good business and it is never as simple as ‘a + b = c’. The formula for success differs from company to company, industry to industry. In saying this, at NHP, within these many elements we can isolate the following three essentials that are integral to our business and helping us with our goal of customer focus and care:

1) Create demand
2) Forever innovate
3) Identify world’s best practice and be early adopters

To ensure we can achieve these three elements, the first step is recognising that simply having the skills to do so will only get you so far. By this I mean without the tools to maximise your skills, reaching an otherwise attainable potential becomes increasingly difficult. I often use the analogy that good golfers will play well with any set of clubs. But to play at their best they need to embrace the latest technologies and equipment and use it to their advantage. So as a company we significantly invest in technologies and training to ensure we are both developing staff and in turn, facilitating our customer promise to be ‘easy to business with’. But more on this soon.

So how does a company like NHP go about creating demand? While there are often shifts in the market that dictate to us what our customers ‘demand’ we provide them, at NHP we like to constantly seek new product developments that aren’t currently in the market place that will further improve our customer’s applications and importantly their bottom line. A quote that’s often used in this instance comes from Henry Ford, for when asked his thoughts around the time he designed his first car, he was quoted as saying, “if I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.” While this no doubt sells his customers short and can come across as somewhat arrogant, Ford did create a new product that revolutionised the world as we know it and created a demand like no other. Steve Jobs and the Apple iPhone is another product that comes to mind. While NHP may struggle to achieve the scale of demand these two men mentioned here have achieved, there is no reason why we can’t put into practice their drive for providing new and innovative products that can help our customers in ways they never knew existed.     

The other two elements at NHP we see as vital is to ‘forever innovate’ and ‘identify world’s best practice and be early adopters’. Whether it be travelling around the world to seek out the finest products and technologies through annual events such as the Hannover Fair in Germany or Rockwell Automation’s Automation Fair in the USA, or simply being in constant engagement with our world-class supply partners spread around the globe, NHP is very quick to engage and deploy what we believe is ‘world’s best’ and tailor it to the local market for our customers.

Further to this, NHP is constantly researching ways to implement new and cutting edge communication tools that improve our customer’s experience with us. For example, over the last couple of years we have deployed Apple iPhones and iPads to our sales team, an illustration of our drive to innovate and remain at the forefront of technology, all the while helping us do business better and to help us focus more on our customer’s needs.

By equipping our sales and customer service staff with such innovative tools, our aim is to facilitate them with the knowledge to help our customers make the right decisions in an efficient manner, all of which goes a long way to transforming a potential customer’s attitude of indifference into one of confidence and trust.

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