Management Centre Europe | MCE | Organizational and Management Development - Strategy Execution

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Royal Philips Electronics

Living Customer Focus from the Top Down

A conversation with Geert Van Kuyck, CMO, Royal Philips Electronics N.V.

As markets and economies changed in recent years, the top leadership of Royal Philips Electronics understood that their business had to change, too. To create the change they sought, Philips needed various types of support. For this they combined the skills of Bain & Company with those of Management Centre Europe.

Geert Van Kuyck of Phillips 

Geert Van Kuyck, CMO Royal Philips Electronics 

How it all started

Philips would start looking outside its laboratory walls. Focus on more than technology or invention. It would collect business and consumer insights. Become a market-driven company. This was the only viable path to long-term profit and growth.


Bigger than we thought

“We weren’t too interested in giving our people a generic training on the topic of NPS. With an e-learning module, 30 minutes and a few clicks you knew everything you needed,” said Mr. Van Kuyck. “Our goal was that people wanted to apply this knowledge in their business. We wanted to change their mindset. As such, we decided that traditional training modules would be completely useless.”

Moving Forward

“I think that MCE has been very flexible to really think with us to truly tailor, and occasionally challenge back with different opinions. And this has led to a series of workshops which was very focused on the needs of the business. I have really appreciated this flexibility and thinking in this way.”

To create the change they sought, Philips needed various types of support. For this they combined the skills of Bain & Company with those of Management Centre Europe (MCE). On the one hand, this allowed implementing an analytically sound business review and strategy process. On the other, Philips could address the capabilities of its executive teams. It could ensure they “moved to action” through a series of workshops. Traditional training, however, was avoided.


NPS today

Today, Philips is half-way through its journey. Initially, there was disbelief. But now the various business teams have truly embraced the market-driven direction. Also, the first results are showing. In the UK lighting business, minor changes were made in ordering, delivery and logistics. These have made a fundamental difference in the way customers perceive Philips. In the dental business, the latest innovations have doubled the NPS and country-by-country scores. Customer perceptions change as initiatives are implemented.


About Geert Van Kuyck

Geert van Kuyck joined Philips as Senior Vice President of Global Marketing Management in fall 2005. As of 1 January 2008 he was appointed as Chief Marketing Officer. Previously, he was Vice President of Marketing for EMEA at Starbucks Coffee Company, where he helped to build the Starbucks retail business across Europe and the Middle East and was responsible for product category performance as well as marketing, communications and sustainability.

Before Starbucks, Mr. Van Kuyck spent almost 14 years with Procter & Gamble, holding various positions in Belgium, Germany, Switzerland and the USA, with a combination of local, European and global responsibilities across a diverse range of consumer businesses. He is a Belgian national, graduated from the University of Leuven, Belgium and is based in Amsterdam, The Netherlands with his wife, son and daughter.


About Royal Philips Electronics

Royal Philips Electronics of the Netherlands is a diversified Health and Well-being company, focused on improving people’s lives through timely innovations. As a world leader in healthcare, lifestyle and lighting, Philips integrates technologies and design into people-centric solutions, based on fundamental customer insights and the brand promise of “sense and simplicity”.

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