In the startup world, you often hear founders say that they are obsessed with their customers.
Isn’t that fucking weird? Merriam-Webster defines obsession as a persistent disturbing preoccupation with an often unreasonable idea or feeling.
Obsession has a strong negative connotation. It’s not something to be proud of.
As your customer, I don’t want you to have a persistent disturbing preoccupation with me. I want you to care about me in the context of our business relationship, sure. But don’t obsess over me.
Synonyms for obsession include fetish and mania. Let’s try that on for size.
“The founder of this startup fetishizes his customers.”
Don’t use obsess if you don’t mean it. And if you do mean it, it may be time to think about if having a persistent disturbing preoccupation with your customers is a good thing.