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Is CX going the same way as Total Quality Management?

24th May 2016
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Has CX become another fad? Is it now a phrase to weave in to the lexicon of management speak to fix the next the next big problem, a fix for all ills and the harbinger of crushing disappointment?

Judging by the amount of hype and web traffic it is certainly starting to look that way. 20 years ago it was Total Quality Management, then Customer Relationship Management and now CX is in real danger of falling into the same trap of not meeting the many expectations the current hype is setting for it. I’m sure at some time, if not already, someone will say '….ah CX will fix that!' and others will be looking for and probably think they are finding tools for implementing CX. Its then that the inevitable disappointment sets in as businesses begin to realise that CX isn’t doing what they expected it to do, and move on.

The thing is that it won’t be the fault of CX, as it wasn’t the fault of CRM or Total Quality in the past either, because it isn’t the magic button. It is because it is never properly invested in or properly embedded within the organisations to be given the chance to work.

An article in 2009 by Davis Balestracci onTQM (Total Quality Management) http://www.qualitydigest.com/inside/twitter-ed/why-did-total-quality-man... ....  could easily be transferred today to apply to CX.

I believe the industry needs to be resetting expectations of what CX can deliver, what is required to create success and encouraging organisations to start taking ownership for delivering what CX promises. It isn’t the answer to all of businesses problems, it isn’t going to solve anything on its own and it certainly isn’t just a technology solution.

So we know what it isn’t, so what is it? According to the Business Dictionary http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/customer-centric.html, being customer centric means “Creating a positive customer experience at the point of sale and post-sale” …. They go on to state that “A customer centric approach can add value to a company by enabling it to differentiate itself from competitors who do not offer the same experience. So essentially CX is a methodology that brings the customer closer to the business making it an element of the business strategy through better visibility of customer needs and fulfilling against those needs.

That sounds like a lot of hard work, commitment and in many cases change, all required to make it work? Yes, correct, it is and it will take a lot of hard work and resource to turn around organisations. It will be those organisations that do make it work who will win the race.

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