Jayraj Lutchmun on the value of adopting a service oriented approach in business

Specialization Series: Q&A with HEC Paris EMBA '20 Alumni Jayraj Lutchmun on how to differentiate your business and create value through services

As part of our Specialization Series, EMBA ’20 and Founder and Managing Director of Le Determinant Jayraj Lutchmun shares his experience from the Specialization Differentiate and Create Value through Services and how it’s helping him to remain one step ahead of industry competition.

What as the highlight of this Specialization?

This Specialization puts what it preaches into practice. The true highlight was how the knowledge was delivered.

The Specializations included high quality class discussions with people from all over the world and from varying professional backgrounds, company visits, practical exercises, speakers from many industries, and case studies examining a range of service businesses, from low cost airlines to luxury hotels. It was an immersion which touches several sectors, meaning one can easily relate the knowledge and apply it to their field.

Why did you choose this Specialization?

This Specialization was the obvious choice for me in relation to the nature of my job as a service company in the oil & gas industry.

Coming from a mechanical engineering background, my mind was framed around products and a standardized set of procedures. I wanted to deepen my understanding of the differentiation from the service competition and the features they employ.

“The act of adopting service excellence differentiates a company from the competition or makes the latter irrelevant. Products can be copied but it’s very difficult to copy a service as it is human delivered.” Jayraj Lutchmun, Founder & Managing Director of Le Determinant. 

Service features affect everyday business, are costly when it comes to research and development, and once developed, are copied by other companies within months. To make a sale in this competitive environment, the timing and pricing have to be perfect, and I hoped that this Specialization could help me to navigate this process with confidence.

There is a movement in all industries towards a service rather than a products approach. One can see this just by looking at the largest global companies today, which are dominated by service-oriented businesses, such as Uber. I wanted to equip myself with the most up-to-date knowledge and practices.

How was this Specialization relevant to your career?

I have worked in the oil & gas sectors for years. It is highly technologically driven and the services being offered are more or less standard. This gives rise to lots of competition with little differentiation – the products and services are traded like commodities.

I needed a different approach towards the market to create unique company offerings. The value proposition had to be changed to gain market share and customer loyalty.

“There is a movement in all industries towards a service rather than a products approach. One can see this just by looking at the largest global companies today.” Jayraj Lutchmun, HEC Paris Executive MBA ‘ 20 Graduate

Did it meet your expectations?

In terms of the knowledge I gained, this course provided me with the seeds required to differentiate and innovate. It completely changed my approach starting from the core values. The core competence of the company changed from being product oriented to value-added services oriented. And from the latter, the products were tailored.

The act of adopting service excellence differentiates a company from the competition or makes the latter irrelevant. Products can be copied but it’s very difficult to copy a service as it is human delivered. It is about culture, process, better customer experience, and much more. And this takes years to replicate.

Starbucks, for example, is not the world’s best coffee. But it is today a global brand as they understand that they are not selling coffee but the culture around it. And they have set up everything around it- from the packaging, to the atmosphere, to personalization, etc.

My experience in the Specialization was great – everything from the support of the administration, to the locations, the courses and knowledge gained by the professors, exceeded my expectations.

The spirit of the Specialization, during both parts in Singapore and Paris, was very friendly, personalized, attentive, and professional. It was a mind-set changing experience!

About the author:

Jayraj Lutchmun is the Founder and Managing Director of Le Determinant a corporate consultancy firm which he founded at the end of his HEC Paris EMBA, which offers tailored corporate services to businesses with ties to the United Arab Emirates. He is also the Director of Raison d’Etre Inc. Born in Mauritia, Mr. Lutchmun has an international career spanning over 15 + years of experience in mechanical engineering and competitive corporate strategy.

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