Ranjay Gulati is the Jaime and Josefina Chua Tiampo Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School.
Companies with an outside-in perspective aim to provide solutions for customers. Those with an inside-out orientation, on the other hand, just focus on products, sales, and the organization.
Customer-centric companies tracked by Gulati between 2001 and 2007 delivered shareholder returns of 150 percent while the S&P 500 delivered 14 percent.
To develop an outside-in orientation, it is essential to translate awareness of a customer issue or problem into action toward solving it and provide the solution to the customer.
Ranjay Gulati: "I naively assumed that all firms must indeed have an outside-in orientation whereby they put their customers first in all their decisions and actions." After all, that is what business is about and marketing texts and courses promoted it . But Gulati says "Much to my surprise, I found that this was the exception rather than the rule for most businesses."
More Reading on the Concept and Ranjay Gulati
Silobusting - Ranjay Gulati
"From Inside-out to Outside in thinking" by Ranjay Gulati, HBS professor in Economic Times Corporate Dossier of 10 May 2013
Transcript of the video