About transformation, invention and reality


It’s funny that Jen chose transformation for a theme. At that very moment, at the other end of the World, I was hosting a meeting with Joe Pine (photo on the right), he who coined the expression ‘Customer Experience’.

About Transformation, invention and reality

In the course of that meeting, Joe described his five major economy levels. The first one was ‘commodities’ and the last one was… transformation. And just at that moment when Jen posted her piece, I was showing Joe our little Friday exchanges.

Back to transformation. Each of the levels described by Joe builds up on the previous one. At first, there were only commodities, and then people decided to use these commodities to make ‘products’.

Then products were ‘commoditised’ and one needed to add service to them. Now service is passé and what consumers want is experience. Beyond experience and building upon it, there is ‘transformation’, that state when a business moves into a total different category, a notch or two higher than the competition and transcends its business.

Transformation in photography

Beyond that, transformation is a process as well and I chose to pick a picture from my files, one I shot a few weeks back in rue des Thermopyles, a street in the 14th district which looks so bijou you can’t help feeling like living there. Going there, in itself, is an experience. I’m sure many of them will feel transformed when they come back from it.


Before and After

But let’s admit it, this picture is the result of a transformation. Now, are you going to side with my wife or not? She contends that one should not be able to tamper with pictures in that way. Yet, the electric compartment fitted in the wall was so ugly I had to do away with it. Similarly, the bike in the background was an annoyance and let’s face it, I wasn’t going to move it away without permission was I? All that was needed was to enhance the experience shown in the photo.

Things were hard enough as it were with the angry owners who were chasing me because I was taking pictures of their property and who thought they could extort money from me. So there it is. After seeing this “before and after” comparison you tell me what you think and whether the wife or myself is right!

Move the slider from right to left to uncover the original version of the picture before the transformation
Yann Gourvennec
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