For CX, Where is not as important as What and Why

Where a CX function is located within a company is a frequent discussion topic among CXers.  I’ve been thinking about this recently and, while obviously each company is unique and every situation different, it occurs to me that where a CX function resides isn’t nearly as important as is what it’s chartered to do.

But if I could get all Simon Sinek-y here, naturally the greater question still, is the Why.  Let’s look at the charter of what your CX organization should be in the first place, then we can start to look at what difference it may make as to where it’s located.  The why should drive the what, and therefore, the where will really just be a slight tweaking and refinement of range of influence. (more…)

By | 2021-03-30T15:13:13+00:00 March 30th, 2021|Categories: CX Culture, CX Jobs, CX Strategy, CX Thoughts, Leadership|0 Comments

It’s the little things

I’ve noticed that, when I write about CX or speak with other CX professionals, I often tend to append my anecdotes about my own experiences with something like, “Well, now, this wasn’t a huge deal, but…” or, “Of course, it’s not the end of the world, but…”  I see many other CX leaders do the same thing.  I’ve written before about how CXers can be the best and the worst Customers because, while we’re sympathetic to those with whom we interact, being in the business we’re also pretty demanding from those who should know better; we recognize and call missteps out when we see them. (more…)

By | 2021-03-15T15:36:05+00:00 March 15th, 2021|Categories: CX Culture, CX Strategy, CX Thoughts|0 Comments

Don’t tell me you love me

A few years back I was at lunch with a mentor and there was something we needed or wanted that we had to ask for.  The waiter replied somewhat along the lines of:  “Well, we’re not supposed to do that, but I’ll go ahead and do that for you.”

We thanked him, but after he walked away, my mentor turned to me and surprisingly said, “what poor form for him to say that.”  When I asked what he meant—after all, I was glad he’d singled us out for special attention—he explained, “so what, now we’re in his debt?  Like he’s done us a favor?” (more…)

By | 2021-02-25T16:39:46+00:00 February 25th, 2021|Categories: CX Culture, CX Strategy, CX Thoughts, Leadership|0 Comments

Maybe you are already “doing” CX

“You’re soaking in it.”  Do you remember that commercial for dishwashing soap that was supposed to be so incredibly good for your skin that the lady who’d gone in (to see Madge, remember?) for a manicure was unknowingly enjoying its benefits, thinking she was dipping her fingers into some wonderful skin tonic?  Or have you heard the concept of fish not realizing they’re wet because they’re surrounded by water? (more…)

By | 2021-02-16T16:20:58+00:00 February 16th, 2021|Categories: Consulting, CX Culture, CX Strategy, CX Thoughts, Leadership, Process Engineering, VoC|0 Comments

Don’t ask questions if you already know the answers

A good lawyer never asks a question for which he doesn’t already know the answer.  That’s not necessarily just about being smart and being prepared.  Frankly, it’s a manipulation technique used to sway juries and judges:  When they get a witness on the stand, the most important thing for an attorney is to control the situation and allow just the right narrative to come through to the audience.  People can object to the ethics, but the technique is age-old.

When we in the CX field speak of a similar rule, not asking questions to which we should know the answer.  Likewise, it’s not about just being prepared; it’s more in speaking to respect for our Customers.  Normally we are referencing surveys, and I’ll start with that, but there’s also another application of this rule I’ll mention in a minute. (more…)

By | 2021-02-09T16:14:29+00:00 February 9th, 2021|Categories: CX Culture, CX Strategy, CX Thoughts|0 Comments

Employees are NOT your Customers

Can I start a controversial article being completely uncontroversial?  Thanks.  Here goes:  Good employee engagement is an absolute requirement in order to drive good CX.  Okay… now, feel free to refer to that as you read on, because I’m not trying to say that engagement isn’t fundamental; in fact, it’s a bedrock necessity if you’re going to provide a good Customer experience that you first ensure you are providing a good employee experience.

With that throat-clearing out of the way, I was shocked (shocked!) when a nontrivial number of contributors (all CX pros) to a forum in which I recently participated seemed confused about the difference between Customers and employees. (more…)

By | 2021-01-25T16:12:42+00:00 January 25th, 2021|Categories: CX Culture, CX Strategy, CX Thoughts, Leadership|0 Comments

Do you hear yourself?

Have you ever had to say to a friend, “it’s not what you said, it’s how you said it”?  I remember a client who used that to describe some of the interactions their managers would have with front-line employees as an example of the need for a professional communications course I offered at the time.  But aside from your partner or spouse or personal relations, it’s surprising how frequently we come across businesses that seem not to grasp the concept of simple politeness. (more…)

By | 2021-01-18T16:06:50+00:00 January 18th, 2021|Categories: CX Culture, CX Strategy, CX Thoughts|0 Comments

Do you love your Customers as much as your employees do?

We hear all the time that hiring is destiny:  You have to be very careful when looking for new team members—especially those who are on the front-line and Customer facing—that they’re empathetic, Customer-focused, and just plain nice.  In fact, there’s an entire cottage industry growing around hiring for your support/services/sales teams to ensure you’ve got the right fit.  Once they’re in the door, we spend tons of time (and money!) explaining our processes and procedures to our new hires so they can make an impact right away.  We may enable them with some of the greatest technology, give them awesome benefits packages, and even stock the fridge in the break room for them.  Volleyball pits, shuffleboards, ping-pong, you name it.  We’ve given them everything they need for work, and play, it seems.

Then they sit down at their desks, put on their headsets, and take calls.

And the wheels fall off. (more…)

By | 2021-01-14T15:29:36+00:00 January 14th, 2021|Categories: CX Culture, CX Strategy, CX Thoughts|0 Comments

When you can’t answer, “Why?”

I wrote recently about an incident at a local grocery store that sparked some thought about how sometimes we provide excuses instead of offering solutions.  Likewise, sometimes at my gym, I come across a piece of equipment that’s out of order for some reason or another.  Usually, there’s a note pinned to it alerting us that it’s not to be used.  To some degree, I’m sure the team member whose job it is to put that sign on the equipment considered his job ‘done.’  The person whose job it is to fix it?  That’s another story.

Anyway, the punchline of these and other similar experiences is that Customers aren’t as interested in hearing about why their experience can’t be better (what we’d call in other scenarios “excuses”), they just want them to be better. (more…)

By | 2021-01-11T16:32:23+00:00 January 11th, 2021|Categories: CX Culture, CX Strategy, CX Thoughts|0 Comments