Company Philosophy Matters

 

Customer Experience is not a Department

 

Working with a diverse group of partners and members has been an education, they all recognize the importance of customer service.  Not everyone grasps that customer service is just a small part of the User or Customer Experience.

Many don’t realize how the User or Customer Experience goes far beyond the definition of service.  Customer Experience plays a role in marketing, sales, growth and revenue.

I continue to share my Customer Experience Philosophy.  Customer Experience is not a department.  Customer Experience is a philosophy to be embraced by every member of an organization, from the CEO to the newest employee hired.

 

Develop a Customer Focused Culture

 

When asked how to develop a Customer Experience centered on the customer, you must create a company culture that is customer focused.  That means every decision that is made has the customer in mind.  

Everyone in the company must understand the role they play in the overall customer service strategy as well as the entire Customer Experience (CX).

 

The Best Companies are Customer Focused

 

The best companies are customer focused, creating policies and procedures with customers needs considered in the process. They train their people, everyone to embrace their customer focused culture.

Many times there is a playbook that clearly explains how to handle certain situations, issues, problems and complaints. This is essential to the training. Yet, it is from this point I want to go a higher level.

 

Culture is About Philosophy

 

Training can Teach Us How

 

Company and outside training can teach us a lot about providing a great Customer Experience.  However, it’s not always about what we’ve been taught.  It’s not about the specific techniques we learn in a role play. No, it’s simply about doing the right thing.

 

Six Steps to a Great Customer Experience

 

Some may think that this is hard to teach, I’ll argue that it is only as difficult as you make it.  Here are the steps:

 

You Need the right people to begin.  First, your leadership team must create the customer focused culture.  Second, you must hire people who will embrace your customer focused culture.

Everyone must understand the basics.  Before you can empower people to do the right thing, they have to build a knowledge base to work from.  Everyone must complete your basic customer service training that is tied to their specific roles in your company.

Empower people to do the right thing.  You need employees who are capable of making their own decisions.  Train everyone in your companies basics and include guidelines and suggestions.  Share example stories of how your philosophy of customer service trumps a company policy.   Prove that employees don’t have to have a manager’s approval every time they are making a customer focused decision.

Use employee decisions as teachable moments.  Whether the employee does the right thing or goes too far, both decisions are teachable moments.  Use those decisions to give feedback to the employee and use the example to teach other employees.

Praise good decisions.  This is part of the feedback just mentioned.  Consistently praising good decisions removes employees’ self-imposed boundaries of what they think they can and cannot do.

Stay in alignment.  Sustaining a customer focused culture is not easy.  You can’t announce it and expect it to take hold.  You can’t train everyone once and expect everything to change on a dime. Various groups within an organization will be trained more often than others, but everyone needs to be reminded on a regular basis.

 

Your Customer Focused Philosophy

 

Embrace a Customer Focused Company Culture

 

While this may seem to over simplify the process to push philosophy over policy, it’s a sensible approach.  It also provides a cogent argument for having a customer focused company culture.  

While I believe that philosophy trumps policy, we still boundaries, which is why it’s important to hire the right people and train them to embrace your philosophy.  

 

Your Customers Will Benefit

 

When you have that accomplished, your customers will reap the benefit of a company that is deeply rooted in a customer focused philosophy.

We would like to hear about what work’s for you.  How does your user experience engage your customers?  How has your business philosophy helped your business grow?

 

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