Changing Business Landscape – The Social Media Way.

by Patrick Liew on October 6, 2013

In 2011, during the heat of the flood crisis in Thailand, I was away in Australia. The casualties and destructions that resulted from the tragedy moved my heart.

The question that crossed my heart and mind was, How can I do my part for the victims while I was away in a distant location and operating in a different time zone?

In desperation, I could only resort to one medium – social media.

To cut a long story short, my friends and I used the social media to organise Learnathon, a charity project to raise support for crisis relief efforts. We broke a national record, gathered more than 1400 people, and raised more than $120,000 – all within the span of less than two weeks.

Through the experience, I was re-awakened to the power of social media to change the way we live, work, learn and play. The power to transform the way we provide service leadership and excellence.

The way we understand, relate to, serve, and build an ongoing relationship with our customers can no longer be the same. Unless we come to grip with the new technology-driven structure, system and process, we will join the dinosaurs of the Jurassic Age.

I shared this beautiful story at the
‘Digital, Social, Mobile Innovation Excellence and Service Leadership’ Seminar on 30 September 2013.

As a result of organizing the Learnathon project, I had three major learning breakthroughs. They can help us achieve a perfect TEN in our service excellence.

They revolves around: 1. Trust – From short term to sustainable trust; 2. Engagements – From periodic to proactive engagements; and  3. Needs – From meeting just current needs to also meeting changing and future needs.

1.Trust – From short term to sustainable trust

All enterprises are in the business of building trust. If the customers don’t trust you, they won’t do business with you.

In the online world, trust level can be raised and lowered much faster than you can introduce a new client loyalty programme. Therefore, the first and last line of defence should be on the Net.

2. Engagements – From periodic to proactive engagements

If you don’t proactively engage the customers, they will disengage you. The way you  connect, collaborate and  co-create solutions with them is going through a sea change in the new economy.

The challenges before you are:  How can you take your customers from a ‘I like you,’ then ‘I trust you,’ and finally, to a  ‘I respect you’ stage. How can you transform
your customers and make them your advocates and loyal partners.

3. Needs – From meeting just  current needs to also meeting changing and future needs

Customers’ needs are constantly changing even as the world around them are changing. In many instances, they do not even know that their needs have changed or should be changed.

After earning your customers’ trust, you  need to proactively engage them and  map out the multifaceted and multidimensional diversity of needs. It ranges from their personal and professional needs, functional needs, business unit’s needs, to organisational needs.

The world may continue to change but service excellence remains one of the major ways to build a sustainable business. How you go about achieving it must continue to evolve with the changing landscape.


I hope this message will find a place in your heart.

By the way, I have also recorded other reflections.

Visit my Inspiration blog at

For my opinions on social affairs, please visit my Transformation blog at

Please visit my website,

Please read my reflections and continue to teach me.

Life is FUNtastic!


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