Successful Business Leadership Requires Being Tuned In to Your Market

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The most successful leaders in business today work differently from the pack, according to research conducted for a new book. Tuned in leaders don't obsess about the competition; instead they obsess about market problems.

When we went back and reviewed notes from our discussions with dozens of CEOs and analyzed the survey data we collected, we found some striking similarities between the companies that are winning in the marketplace

The most successful business leaders develop breakthrough product experiences by meeting and understanding people in the marketplace, say the authors of Tuned In the new book about uncovering the extraordinary opportunities that lead to business breakthroughs. These findings result from the authors' research (including over 3,500 survey responses received in 2007 plus interviews with nearly 50 company CEOs) to understand the professional life of product managers and marketers, and the pervasiveness of major product and strategy challenges.

"When we went back and reviewed notes from our discussions with dozens of CEOs and analyzed the survey data we collected, we found some striking similarities between the companies that are winning in the marketplace," says Phil Myers, President of Pragmatic Marketing and co-author of Tuned In. "Most of the successful CEOs we talked with treated them as nothing more unusual than looking both ways before crossing the street. These maxims seem to help tuned in companies operate with a sense of comfort and confidence, in stark contrasts to the tuned out companies, which seemed to be constantly struggling."

The most important thing tuned in leaders do is to live in the potential customer's world, especially by interviewing and studying potential customers. The tuned in leader develops a corporate culture that works to achieve the following objectives:

Find unresolved problems in the marketplace.

Know prospective customers and their problems better than they know themselves

Build a business case based on quantifying the impact of the offering in the market

Create breakthrough product experiences that solve market problems by leveraging the organization's distinctive competence

Clearly understand and articulate the powerful ideas that resonate for buyers

Establish connections by communicating to a well defined set of prospective customers in a way that speaks directly to them

Distribute the product experience in a way that makes it easy for people to buy

The authors of Tuned In offer a model for success used by many companies to create breakthrough products and services. Tuned In: Uncover the Extraordinary Opportunities That Lead to Business Breakthroughs by Craig Stull, Phil Myers, and David Meerman Scott is published by Wiley on June 27, 2008 and available wherever business books are sold. ISBN: 978-0470260364

Anyone can use Tuned In to replicate the model for success. It works for well-known companies like Ford, Apple, and GE and those not-so-famous like GoPro and Zipcar. It works for realtors, doctors, ministers and even rock stars. Tuned In will teach you how to transform your everyday activities into those which create the kind of culture that builds market leaders.

Authors Craig Stull and Phil Myers lead the team at Pragmatic Marketing, the company behind Tuned In. David Meerman Scott is an online thought-leadership strategist who teaches the New Rules of Marketing seminar for Pragmatic Marketing.

About Pragmatic Marketing: Twice recognized as one of America's fastest growing private companies by Inc. Magazine, Pragmatic Marketing provides training seminars, onsite workshops, consulting services, and an online community for technology product managers, marketers and executives. Over 45,000 people at more than 3,000 companies world-wide have been trained using the Pragmatic Marketing Framework, a practical, market-driven approach to creating and launching technology products. See


Graham Joyce

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