The Essence of Service – In a Cartoon

In the middle of final editing for recently published Service Innovation we decided that we needed an illustration in Chapter 1, for our discussion of what service is. I sent a Facebook message to my talented daughter, Kiki Schirr, and asked her if she could send an illustration within 90 minutes. This is what she sent:

Service Innovation 6

The illustration is on page 8 of the book, published last month.

Frame 3 catches the essence of service: the value created with the customer. The young woman, together with the airline were able to create a memorable visit with loved ones.

Frame one adds a more nuanced view. The flight was crowded and noisy, but that was not important to this consumer who was creating a visit at the end. So other customers who might focus more on the experience during the use of the service might not have been as satisfied as the young woman was.

A service provider should understand the value creation process of customers. An effective service innovation process will focus on enhancing both the customer value creation and the service experience.

A single illustration can say a lot!

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5 Responses to The Essence of Service – In a Cartoon

  1. Thank you for initiating a conversation, which brought me to your site for a closer look at your work than what Twitter can offer. With my return to studies in maths, I’ve been asked many times now if I’m also planning to return to teaching. The more I’m imposed upon with that question, the more I think about teaching again, and pondering what works and does not work to engage students and create learner interest. I feel especially confronted with this question in regard to mathematics education, as I’ve also heard those stories about marketers and writers choosing their career because they were avoiding math classes. This post prompts me to think about math education as a relationship between a service provider and consumer; somewhere in the exchange the client has to be guided/empowered enough to create or find his/her own value in the acquisition of knowledge. It’s an interesting puzzle, especially intriguing when thinking of it in terms of service innovation.

  2. Gary Schirr says:

    An interesting question indeed!

    Have you heard the marketing analysis of Higher Education? Higher Education is a unique service – students pay dearly but routinely refuse delivery!

  3. The psychology involved is really interesting; education is about changing our ideas, but our deep human desire is not to be changed, but affirmed. Post-secondary education is a long process of breaking down and then rebuilding a view of the world.

  4. Gary Schirr says:

    Thanks for your comments – and the likes!
    As I am sure you probably feel as a blogger also, it is exciting to know that a thoughtful reader is actually reading posts and reacting!

  5. I do; although, I’ve recently removed public access to the blog. I do have something new planned, and when I get it going I’ll send you a pointer.

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