The Internet was a jarring innovation in the culture. Millions of people were unprepared for what it had to offer. Nonetheless, companies needed to take it seriously- and quickly. The culture went from forcing a middleman between company and client, to removing the middleman entirely. The Internet managed to make just about everything accessible on some level. Now, the cultures is at a point where company contact is a click away. The website has all the necessary information to contact the company. There are social media accounts, emails, and other forms of contact. Even if all this fails, the company still has a track record. Customers can find just about anything they want about a company, including who they wronged in the past, what business deals they are involved in, and what kind of reception they have in the culture as a whole.
There is no way for a company to escape this pressure. Many people consider this a good thing while others may consider it a bad thing. Regardless, it encourages companies to develop a customer-facing business.
Face the Customer Head-On
Customer-facing is a broad term. It typically refers to the arrangement where a company is directly interacting with the customer. Some industries are naturally open to this. A restaurant is inherently more customer-faced than, say, an electronics developer. Every industry can implement customer-facing principles and strategies. Customer-facing only means a more direct relationship. Social media has become an embodiment of exactly this. Companies handle almost no barrier to entry with interacting and reacting to their customer base. Companies should have no problem finding out how they are perceived- all it takes is a quick Google search. If a company types their company name into Google, and Google suggests the word scam to follow it, the company may have a major problem.
Fun with Transparency
Though this may seem like an exaggeration, it is not. Transparency is almost unavoidable in the new Internet culture. The world is pushing towards a customer-facing business culture, and this can have its flaws. A single mistake could be catastrophic for the company. Companies will require impervious leaders that develop their own transparency within the company. Customer facing is not easy for companies to manage, but like it or not, the culture is pushing everyone in that direction.