Even a tech outsider must realise that there is something different about Apple. As a business, it consistently chooses different paths from competitors such as Google or Microsoft. One reason for this may be that it takes Peter Drucker's advice seriously -- "There is only one valid definition of a business purpose: to create a customer."
Law firms should have a similar focus, but often they appear to be more motivated by income and profit figures because those are easy to see and measure. As Horace Dediu puts it in the article excerpted below:
'The mass phenomenon of measuring the wrong thing because it’s the easiest to measure is called “financialization”. Financialization is the process by which finance and finances (rather than creation) determine company, individual and society’s priorities. It comes about from an abundance of data that leads to fixation on what is observable to the detriment of awareness of hazards or obstacles or alternatives. This phenomenon is more likely when the speed of change increases and decision cycles shorten.
'Financialization is creeping into all aspects of society and the extent to which it infects companies is the extent to which they suffer from early mortality.'
A proper focus on customers (whether or not they are called clients) requires firms to generate and study the right data, and then ask the right questions of it.
Looking at Apple this way gives the impression that the company has a large number (nearly a billion) of repeat (subscribed to service) customers. These customers can be seen to spend a predictable recurring amount (average selling price) on Apple’s brand. The repetition of these metrics in public commentary suggests that customer acquisition and retention are among Apple’s goals. The key question is whether this is Apple’s primary goal. Seen this way each centralized resource allocation question can be assumed to be prefaced with “In order to create/preserve customers should we…?” This leads to answers quite different from questions that start with “In order to sell/profit more should we…?”