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« Are you solving a problem or creating a problem? | Main | Worldview and stories »

Even better than an app?

Mitch writes about the very near future when most fast-serve and mid-priced restaurants will have a tablet on the table, letting you order and pay without ever speaking to a waiter. It sort of takes the magic out of restaurants for me, but I get his point.

And your store, your store is likely to become not much more than a showroom for an online seller if pointing and clicking is cheaper, faster and more satisfying than hunting down a salesperson and dealing with a transaction.

And this rash, perhaps it might be better diagnosed right now by emailing a picture of it to Jay Parkinson than it would by hassling for an appointment and spending the time and the money to drive an hour to the doctor's office to show it to someone in person.

And when was the last time you looked forward to waiting in line to talk to a bank teller? Or a loan officer? 

It used to be that the goal was to be perfect, like a computer. Now, of course, that's not nearly good enough if you're in any job that can be done by a computer (or a customer with an app in his hand).

Once we acknowledge that the measurable, objective job might be taken by an app, we have to make service dramatically better than self-service, or else this job is gone. If it's not special, don't bother.

What an opportunity! Instead of seeing a job as a shuttler of information and stuff from place to place, we can acknowledge that in fact, the shuttling isn't unique or even particularly valuable. The human being part is what's worth something.

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