Author, Speaker, Creative Catalyst LiorArussy.com
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Customer experience 2.0: Tell an inspiring story and engage every employee

24th Jan 2011
Author, Speaker, Creative Catalyst LiorArussy.com
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MyCustomer.com

Customer experience 1.0 was a quixotic effort that resulted in very little change. So an important characteristic of customer experience 2.0 is the power of the story.

Forrester just released their 2011 projections for the customer experience market. One of their projections for 2011 is the expansion of customer experience to new function in the organisation that were not initially engaged. This is great news. 
In customer experience 1.0, a group of partially empowered (some will say minimally empowered) well-intentioned managers were trying to change mutli thousands employees organisations. It was a quixotic effort that resulted in very little change. If anything, it produced mostly exhaustion and frustration. It also caused loss of momentum and belief in the organisation’s capacity to change and become customer-centric.
The core mistake that those well-intentioned managers operated by was that they can actually change a well ingrained siloed organisation ALONE. This mistake was followed by the flawed assumption that customer experience is common sense and everyone will follow just because they said so (and demonstrated the abysmal customer satisfaction scores). At best they were known as the customer scores people. At worst they annoyed the organisation, reminding everyone that we are not as good as we think we are. 
Disciplined execution
Customer experience 2.0 will usher in a new era of disciplined execution. The renegades are being replaced by operational officers. At one client, the chief customer officer actually own all channels and does not operate as a chief evangelist. This CCO has the power to make the required changes and does not have to beg for favors as other CCO often do. 
Another important characteristic of customer experience 2.0 is the power of the story. If the underlying story of customer experience is our NPS is low', it will not inspire people to action. If the story is an inspiring story about making a difference on c'ustomers’ lives, then you have a shot at capturing attention and ultimately performance of employees and executives alike. 
Develop a story that capture their imagination and make them WANT to do it. Make employees and executives be proud of taking part and volunteer to join the efforts. Test your story, if you do not get volunteers, you are less likely to get results.
The customer experience team can not do the hygiene job of everyone else. Let me repeat that. The customer experience team is not here to do the job of everyone else. This was a fatal mistake that lead to wasted time and disappointments. Customer experience practitioners should be the providers of tools, vision and measurements. But every function and employee need to take their own responsibility and address their customer issues. They each need to aspire to deliver the desired experience and exceed customer expectations.
Customer experience 2.0 need to clearly answer the following questions:
  • What is the cause? – Tell an inspirational story of customer experience
  • Who does it ? – Demonstrate direct, actionable task to each function and employee
  • How will we do it? - Provide tools and vision to enable employees to take ownership
  • Why do we do it? – Develop clear business case
Customer experience 1.0 left us with the understanding of what customer experience is and why it is important in general. It also crwated unquenched thirst for 'now what?'. 
It is time to leap to the next phase and turn the promise into a profitable reality. We will do so by providing the organisation with an actionable blueprint for success.
Learn More at Lior’s Customer Experience Boot Camp – Ten Free webinars. Register today at http://bit.ly/huxoKf

Lior Arussy is the founder and president of Strativity Group, a global customer experience research and consulting firm specialising in design, innovation and deployment of differentiating, profitable customer experiences. His books include Customer Experience Strategy: The Complete Guide From Innovation To Execution.

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