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Hardcover Wired to Care: How Companies Prosper When They Create Widespread Empathy Book

ISBN: 013714234X

ISBN13: 9780137142347

Wired to Care: How Companies Prosper When They Create Widespread Empathy

In this essential and illuminating book, top business strategist Dev Patnaik tells the story of how organizations of all kinds prosper when they tap into a power each of us already has: empathy, the ability to reach outside of ourselves and connect with other people. When people inside a company develop a shared sense of what's going on in the world, they see new opportunities faster than their competitors. They have the courage to take a risk on...


Format: Hardcover

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Customer Reviews

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Helpful for Companies of All Sizes

Wired to Care combines real life stories about many companies we know and understand along with business background information to help us apply the lessons to the places we work. The core message here is that caring for your customers isn't just new-agey PR material. It provides tangible benefits for your company and helps you succeed. The examples demonstrate this lesson. Many motorcycle companies were failing - but Harley Davidson put its efforts into building up its connections with its loyal fans. It was those fans who helped Harley thrive in a down economy. You need to really know where your customers are coming from. Many if not most Harley employees own and ride Harleys. A schoolteacher doesn't need to BE eight years old, but she needs to understand what eight year olds worry about and how they learn best. An Indian doctor is not African-American, but she can still work to understand her patient's concerns. Microsoft is a juggernaut - but they have had successes and failures. When they wanted to make a game system, they took a bunch of gamers, had them develop a system THEY would love, and they were able to take on the powerhouses of Sony and Nintendo. However, turning their attention on Apple's iPod, they didn't build the same quality team of "music lovers". The result was a MP3 player which failed miserably. I loved the story about coffee. Several decades ago Arabica (tasty coffee) was expensive, while Robusta (bitter) was cheap. Coffee manufacturers slowly added more and more robusta into their blend over the years. Existing coffee drinkers got used to the new flavor and coffee makers thought they were all set. However, they weren't bringing in new drinkers! Young people who tried coffee thought that older people were insane to drink this bitter brew. It wasn't until coffeehouses started coming out with all Arabica coffee again that younger people saw just how tasty a good coffee could be. Zildjian took the cymbal, which was an orchestra-only instrument, and by talking with musicians in small bars, created an entire new market for their crashes and rides. They were hugely successful even in the middle of the great depression. Numerous studies show that our brains light up when we relate to someone. If we see them pick up a book, to our brain it's almost as if WE picked up a book. So by having customers who relate to your company on a personal level, you have already made those connections that will keep them supporting you and buying your products. There was just one minor complaint with the book. At one point they are talking about how a book was written with suggestions to save money. The money-saving book talked about looking at what other people had put out for trash / recycling and if something seemed interesting. Wired to Care felt this was "inhuman" advice. Inhuman? I know many people who swap things with their neighbors and they all feel it's a quite fun way to keep items out of the trash stream. I would hardly feel thi

Wired For Success

This should be required reading for CEOs and business leaders. The author does a fine job of exploring a smart concept that one would think should be easy to implement, yet some CEOs just won't "get it," even though it is a common sense business strategy. The book is nicely organized and I especially enjoyed reading anecdotes and examples, which put it all into perspective. Wired isn't just for any single industry, but rather it is for every industry. Every business is engaged in customer service. If leaders would embrace it, they would surely see results.

Informative report on why empathetic companies do well

Executives often know little about the people who buy their companies' products and services. This is not surprising. To study people, you must care about them. However, most companies eliminate empathy from their operations. In essence, they proceed as if they have calculating, survival-bent reptile brains. Profits drive everything. This is an odd disconnect because corporate livelihoods depend on people - not lizards - and people's brains are hardwired to be empathetic. Dev Patnaik (writing with Peter Mortensen) shows why firms that connect empathetically with their customers do better financially. He insists today's cold-hearted, bottom-line business world has room for caring companies, and he points to IBM, Nike and Harley-Davidson as examples. The fact that empathy is also a strong business strategy is icing on the cake. getAbstract suggests this fine book to CEOs, marketing officers and other executives who want to build their business by acting on their respect for their customers. As Patnaik explains on his blog, "Empathy isn't about having a visionary leader. It's about making customer information an easy, everyday and experiential part of working at your company."

A great book on reaching your audience and building requirements

I work as a Web developer and application designer, focused on how to make applications that people can quickly use, and find useful. While Wired to Care focuses on marketing answering the question of how to connect with people outside our market, it really shines in getting across the point that we quickly become insulated in our work environment and not fully understand what is usable to others. I'm finding myself using it often when building requirements for a new project, and validating designs. Dev Patnaik uses lots of examples to discuss how we can connect with both our current clients, and those outside our current sphere of influence. There are many, many examples taken from different areas, both with sports, consumer products and discussions on how our brains are wired. One example discusses how American car manufacturers living in an area where everyone around them drives American cars, thus blinding them to why the foreign markets are succeeding, and how they can innovate. I find myself thinking about this often as I walk around the office, and even in the world, and how my middle-class community and lifestyle have jaded me in recognizing how other people use our products. This is a must read, and I expect to begin getting copies to hand out to co-workers that are involved in application design and development.
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