Recovering a lost trust is more difficult than building trust from the beginning. However, here is a Hyosung person who successfully reinstated the trust for Hyosung with endeavors to determine the core needs of customers, and fearless challenges. This is the story of Chief Business Officer Horst Zang, of GST Global GmbH, the winner of 2017, Hyosung Employee of the Year Award.
Prioritizing on reinstating customers‘ trust
Before Hyosung acquired GST (Global Safety Textile), a German airbag textile manufacturer, GST was on its heels for over three years. The OPW (One Piece Woven) products manufactured by GST‘s USA factory had troubles with their quality which lead to delay in delivery, which eventually caused GST’s major customers to discontinue their business with GST and review possibilities of granting contracts to one of GST‘s competitors. Losing a major customer deservedly influenced other customers, where it became more difficult to open new business lines with new customers. Ever since being appointed as the Chief Business Officer of GST in 2016, Horst Zang lead GST‘s marketing organization with the priority to reestablish trust with customers.
First, he insisted the marketing staff to consistently inform its partners that GST is still a reliable partner. The marketing staff met its customers on a weekly basis, showing actual metrics of the improved quality and delivery, and informed customers with measures that GST had taken to invest in quality improvement and introduce new technologies, which collectively achieved a gradual reestablishment of trust.
Obviously, regaining trust was not an easy task. However, GST expanded its correspondence from customers‘ procurement staff to the development staff, where information on GST’s investments in new facilities, R&D activities, and improved productivity and quality benefiting therefrom were continuously relayed to whomever possible it can reach.
Internal measures include instituting a marketing organization called CBU, Customer Business Unit, designated a unit to each customer to have repetitive meetings with customers, listening to the voice of customers, and reinstate the lost trust. From daily meetings with staff members of customers, and weekly meetings with managers of customers, GST prevented problems related to supply and identified customers‘ needs to reestablish its credibility of a trustworthy supplier and improved customers’ value. And in 2017, alas, the innovative marketing efforts paid off. No more claims were issued by customers, and by virtue of the reinstated trust, GST executed a long-term deal with the customer who announced that there will be no new orders back in July. Furthermore, GST executed new contracts with customers in the USA and Europe to generate new revenue.
Adding teamwork to pin-point analysis
“Different marketing strategies are required for different customers to fit their unique and individual characteristics. We established customized business plans for each customer through global CBU meetings. In the nature of our business, GST cannot under-appreciate the relationships with secondary suppliers who provides airbag fabrics to module manufacturers, or automobile manufacturers.“
Marketing staff met more customers than ever before. They identified the needs of customers they are designated to, figured out ways to satisfy such needs, and attempted various measures including emphasizing GST‘s strength by presenting its customer needs responsiveness, and technology, and suggesting programs that will satisfy the needs of complete automobile manufacturers, who are the ultimate end user of GST products.
“Due to the complexity of the automobile industry, success can be brought upon a comprehensive effort by providing services on time throughout the entire domain including procurement, engineering, quality, management, logistics, and developing suppliers. Our marketing staff at GST will endeavor for the growth of GST as a global entity. I am confident that GST, the newest member of Hyosung will be an innovative leader of the airbag industry.“
Innovative marketing activities reinstating the fallen trust in GST, and rehabilitating the credibility to the complete automobile manufacturers, that are the eventual end user of customers, GST gained its reputation as a long-term partner customers thrive to be associated with, and thickened its order book. You can witness the face of an innovative leader, a Hyosung person who does not settle with today and challenges tomorrow from the face of Hortz Jang.
Written by | SHIN Gyeong-hwa
Coordinated by | IM Seon-hye