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Thursday, March 6, 2014

What a can opener can teach you about the customer KURIAN THARAKAN Special to the St. Albert Leader







Although canning was invented in the 1790’s, the can opener WAS NOT invented until 1855 – a full 60 years later!!





Items such as these are often sources for angst among your customers and allow great opportunity for you to differentiate.  Browse, select, buy, play, organize all in one system. In a previous post, we used the example of Apple’s entry into the crowded mp3 player market in 2001. By itself, the iPod is just another music device, but with a PROPRIETARY integration into the iTunes ecosystem, the Total Customer Experience is transformed. Browse, select, buy, play, organize all in one system. Other mp3 manufacturers are going to have a tough time breaching this moat. And the more tunes the customer buys, the more playlists they create, the deeper and wider that moat becomes.  By understanding the elements of the Total Customer Experience, entirely new opportunities for your business will open up. Kurian Tharakan is the Executive in Residence for NABI.

Photo: Metro News Service


The canning of foods was a novel and highly useful invention developed in the late 1790’s, prodded forward by a French military contest to develop a safe method for preserving and transporting food. One of the large constraints on military campaigns at that time was that the starting of wars was typically limited to the summer months as that was when food was most plentiful. The military contest awarded the sum of 12,000 francs to Nicolas Appert, an inventor who discovered that food cooked inside a jar did not spoil until the seal was broken. Thus the canning industry and canned food was born. Over the next few decades, the processes became perfected, and canned foods became essential in military campaigns and in such expeditions as to the north and south poles. Eventually canned food rose to become a high status item in the pantries of many European households. The strategy lesson in this story lies in the TCE, or Total Customer Experience. Although canning was invented in the 1790’s, the can opener WAS NOT invented until 1855 – a full 60 years later!! Until that time, customers relied on knives, bayonets, and other sharp instruments to remove the lids from the can, sometimes injuring themselves in the process. Relief came when Robert Yeates invented the lever type can opener that greatly eased the customer experience of getting to the contents of the can. It would be another 50 years before the

double wheel design that we know today came into being. Too often, businesses focus entirely on perfecting the product at the expense of understanding the Total Customer Experience SURROUNDING the product. Things like:

PUBLIC CONSULTATION SESSION Grandin Mall, St. Albert Proposal to obtain a Development Permit in a Direct Control Mixed Use District Date: March 25, 2014 Time: 6:30-8:30pm (presentation at 7:00pm) Location: Grandin Mall (east end by Scotia Bank) Members of the public are invited to participate in a public consultation session intended to provide the community with information concerning Amacon’s proposal for the redevelopment of Grandin Mall and to gather feedback. The Phase one development applications include a development permit application and plan of subdivision application to allow 145 residential units in two new mid-rise structures (consistent with the Downtown Area Redevelopment Plan (DARP) and Direct Control Mixed Use (DCMU), the partial demolition of the mall (retaining the Scotia Bank), the retention of the office tower, and a new sales centre. At 7:00pm, the proponent will present an overview of the overall master plan for the site focusing on the key elements of the Phase 1 development. This public meeting will offer an opportunity for the public to provide input to the proponent and the City about this proposal.

For further information contact: Inger Jenset, Planning and Design Consultant Phone: 416-340-9004 ext. 349 Email:

Have you ever thought of working at Cabela’s or... City of St. Albert: • Marketing & Communications Assistant – Rec and Parks • Administrative OfďŹ cer – Planning & Engineering • Home Drainage Program Summer Students – Public Works • Emergency Services Personnel – Fire Services AD{CS5147477}

• Public Works Operations Supervisor • Concession Attendants – Rec and Parks • HVAC Technician – Public Works • Taxation Representative – Assessment & Taxation • Fire Prevention OfďŹ cer I – Fire Services • Manager, Development Branch – Planning & Development • Boot Camp Instructor


St. Albert Leader March 6, 2014  

St. Albert Leader March 6, 2014

St. Albert Leader March 6, 2014  

St. Albert Leader March 6, 2014