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Executive Summary Business today has evolved to become more customer oriented Companies are shifting towards the customer segment focusing on customer relationship management customer lifetime value and customer retention General Electric GE a diversified company and already so successful in the old economy was not spare from the shift either Its former CEO Jack Welch executed a series of changes in the company to prepare GE for the shift towards customer focus Once there it concentrated on Customer Relationship Management CRM to improve Customer Lifetime Value and Customer Retention This is done by continuously delighting customers to achieve customer satisfaction With that comes customer loyalty and ultimately a successful company CRM has both positive and negative strategic implications on GE With CRM GEs has achieved employee satisfaction quality good positioning customer satisfaction loyalty and improved performance productivity It has also increased profit shareholders wealth market value as well as voter the most admired company Despite GEs achievements there are also setbacks such as company downsizing retrenchment staff resignation high CRM systems cost intruding customers privacy and loss of customer through segmentation Companies could learn from the GEs example known as the GE Way on how to execute the shift towards the customer segment and implement the CRM systems smoothly and successfully CRM helps companies manage customers effectively bringing success along the way if implemented correctly 1 Introduction Up till the early 1980s customers are seen as average statistic passive buyers with a predetermined role of consumption Market research and inquiries had very limited or no interaction with the customers It is mostly a one way communication in the old economy Prahalad CK and Ramaswamy V 2000 p2 As the business competition gets tougher in the 1990s Kotler admitted the economy has shifted into a customer economy where companies became customer owning focus because customers are now more knowledgeable and in short supply
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