Being open is perceived by customers as a positive thing. It is an equivalent to equality and sustainability – it is a new word which represents something good that customers want to be associated with. No customer wants to be associated with closed, not equal and not sustainable.
However, not every company can be open. Many companies do not have the capacity, skills, and resources to open up to customers, nor to make any changes resulting from that openness. For example, oil companies are heavily dependent on the technology which is hard to change and their business models have no margin for change, which forces them to be closed. Also there are companies with management that sees no value or too much risk in expanding customer relationships.
Therefore, any company which can be open should embrace it, increase it, communicate it, and promote it. This will differentiate that company from others who can not do it. And any form of positive differentiation is a competitive advantage.
|Invisible hand of open innovation||Andrea Toniolo interview for Digital Innovators|