How to create a rockstar CX team
Customer experience is more than web design. Every touchpoint between the customer and a business informs their experience. Because of this, many companies are forming CX teams. These teams are tasked with creating a great customer experience throughout the customer journey and at every channel of interaction.
However, a CX team is only as good as the team members in it. To get the right professionals on board, follow the next general guidelines.
Teams should comprise members from across the organization
Again, the CX team is not a web design team. It is not a customer service team either. Instead, it should be a team of individuals with experience or technical skills that give them insights into what works when it comes to creating better customer experiences.
Depending on the organization this might include team members from retail sales teams, customer service staff, web designers, warehouse staff and order processors, business analysts, marketing team members, essentially anyone who has a customer facing role across a variety of channels or whose job impacts those who do.
Doing this ensures that a variety of experiences and insights that relate to the customer experience are taken into account. Without this variety, team's risk becoming echo chambers where no existing ideas are challenged and any new strategies fall in line with established beliefs.
Shadowing and cross-training improves understanding
When team members don’t understand the challenges the others face in delivering great customer experiences. It can also act as a roadblock to recognizing when decisions are made that have a negative impact on customer experience.
For example, a member of the web design team and a member of the marketing team may have worked together on a project to add new fields to an order form. Their goal being to collect more customer information to improve future marketing campaigns. In the meantime, customer service reps begin receiving angry calls and emails from people who find the fields intrusive and who are frustrated that placing an order requires too much effort.
By creating situations where CX team members can observe on another working, or when possible cross trained to actually understand how to perform some of the tasks people from other areas of the organization, better understanding is created.
Communication and collaboration must be facilitated
An effective CX team must be able to communicate and work with one another effectively. Challenges faced in doing this may include being in distributed locations or having varying schedules. In order to get the most out of their efforts, a plan should be made to keep everyone on the same page, and to ensure communication.
One solution might be to create a team Wiki page that acts as a knowledge base. Video conferencing technology can be used to bridge geographical distances. Tools such as Trello or Basecamp can help to facilitate communication and collaboration also.
Team leaders and managers must have the right tools/training
When it comes time to implement customer experience solutions, some team members will take on the responsibilities of leading and managing these projects. For some, this will be new territory entirely. It’s imperative that they have the tools, training, and support to be successful.
Obviously this includes access to project management tools. However, there are other initiatives to be taken. Team leaders can be mentored by more experienced managers. There’s also the option of using formal training programs such as encouraging managers to pursue APM qualification or obtain another project management certifications.
Team members should be chosen from across the management hierarchy
A good CX team will contain a mix of individuals when it comes to the management hierarchy. If a CX team, for example, is solely comprised of management level staff, it will lack the insights of what those who interact with customers see or those who deal with logistics. On the other hand, without management input a CX team may risk straying too far from the company’s overall branding efforts.
They may also fail to see management’s reasoning behind decisions that may initially appear to be arbitrary.
Empower the team to empower customer-facing staff
Websites that work great, self service customer service options, even check out lanes that are designed efficiently are all part of a great customer experience. However, there is nothing that impacts CX more than when customers interact with employees who are empowered to take action to help them when there is an issue or, better yet, take action to make a good experience amazing.
To assemble a rockstar CX team, you must first choose the right team members. Then, you find ways to encourage them to understand one another and how various actions and decisions can impact the customer experience. Finally, you empower those who emerge as leaders and ensure that all the necessary tools are in place.