The International Society of Service Innovation Professionals interviews Gautam Mahajan

Gautam Mahajan is interviewed by The International Society of Service Innovation Professionals

Eighth in the ISSIP series of interviews with Tech Leaders: a conversation with Gautam Mahajan, author and thought leader in the area of Value Creation.

This month, Michele Tomic, ISSIP Editor speaks with Gautam Mahajan.

MT – As a starting point, please tell us something about how you got involved with ISSIP and your experience.

GM – Five years ago, in 2013, Jim Spohrer encouraged me to work on customer value and service and introduced me to ISSIP. He then asked me to speak at ISSIP during one of my San Francisco events. Those activities resulted in developing professional and personal relationships with ISSIP Leaders and friends including Stephen Kwan, Doug Morse, Jim Spohrer and Yassi Moghaddam. I think ISSIP is a great organisation.

MT – It seems that you’ve lived, studied, and worked in different places around the globe. Please tell us about your background and how it influenced your life’s work in Value Creation.

The 2nd Global Conference on Creating

Value, May 15-16, 2019, New York USA.

Paper Submission due March 15, 2019.


In conjunction with the Gabelli School of

Business at Fordham University, Creating

Value Alliance, Customer Value Foundation

and the Journal of Creating Value. For more

details, please see the Conference website,

For submissions, see –

Contact: Gautam Mahajan <>


GM – I worked for a Fortune 50 company in the US for 18 years and learned to create value for the Company by doing unusual things, opening markets they never expected and by inventions and innovations. It was ‘on the job training – I was not taught to be a value creator but rather learned it by practice.

Moreover, my experience made me aware that creating value was the role of all individuals, universally including in developing countries where it’s more for individuals subsistence. Everywhere people talk about value and creating value, but no one is taught what to do. Most people do not even think about creating value for themselves, and therefore for others. I felt people at the bottom of the pyramid also needed to be taught to create value.

MT – Congratulations on the publication of your new book, The Value Imperative. You have written other books so what prompted you to write this one?

GM – Value and creating value are an imperative for individuals, for companies and for other people. I wanted people to understand this and also learn how to create value. The book will help build a value creation mind-set and change thought processes.

The book shows why value creation is necessary and how to create value. Also it talks about a change in education to go beyond teaching people to be functional managers, good administrators and efficient executives to becoming value creators cutting across functional silos.

 MT – Through your companies, Interlink and the Customer Value Foundation, you have worked with different types of companies to help them with customer strategies. What is it like working across industries and what helps ensure success?

GM – Those companies that can create value for employees, customers, partners, supply and delivery chains and society are ensured longevity and long term success, versus those with a narrow view on only profit creation.

Companies have to start with a customer strategy before they build a business strategy so that their future is directed by the customer value they create. Companies with a focus on the ecosystem and its people are bound to become more successful.

MT – What types of backgrounds have you found give managers tools for success? Any suggestions for courses of study or training?

GM – Managers have to think like customers and not stop being customers in their dealings. Also they have to learn to let their front line people become value creators by forming customer circles where the front line people take responsibility for customers, and develop a service mentality.

MT – To ensure the next generations are ready to take on the challenge of Value Creation, if you could design a higher education program, what courses or focus would you incorporate?

GM – I have already mentioned using customer strategy to build business strategy. I will tell executives not to take off their customer hats when they enter the workplace and become and start to think like current company people, but to keep their customer hat on and be customer led. That is how they can give true service.

I would teach value creation at all levels and make people understand that their role is to create value, and how to become value creators to cause success for themselves and for their people and for their companies and society.

The MBA degree would be replaced by a Master of Value Creation.

I have also started global conferences on creating value. The 2nd Global Conference on Value Creation will be held in New York in May 2019 (

MT – Please tell us something about your day-to-day work – what is your average day like?

GM – I seek value creators and try to get them to grow the Creating Value Alliance ( to create more value. I spend time on the Journal of Creating Value, and in talking to people around the world to create more value, and to come to or speak at our Global Conferences. I also contribute articles to various media and speak around the world.



Narender Kumar,

Customer Value Foundation

Journal of Creating Value

New Delhi 110065 +91 9971288580

Twitter @ValueCreationJ Blogs:

Value Creation, Total Customer Value Management, Customer Value Investment, How Creating Value Makes you a Great Executive, The Value Imperative, Value Dominant Logic

Explore posts in the same categories: Business & Management

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