Whose problem are you solving?

I’ve written about Customer Effort Score (CES) before and kind of chided the intractability of defining it specifically.  Of course, it’s not fair to pick on CES, as I’ve written in other instances, even common definitions like First Contact Resolution runs into definitional problems when they encounter actual Customer opinions (we all have our own definitions).

But specifically, when it comes to Effort (or, as I sometimes will call it, “hassle”), I remember a wise Process Engineer who used to work for me once noted:  “we’re defining ‘hassle’ from our own perspective.”  And he was correct to point it out in that instance.  I wonder:  Are you doing the same? (more…)

By | 2021-01-07T16:49:39+00:00 January 7th, 2021|Categories: CX Strategy, CX Thoughts, Process Engineering, VoC|0 Comments

CX…inside Customer Support?

Where is your CX function located?

That’s a common question often used to kick off conversations on many webinars and conference chats.  For a while I found it mildly interesting as a survey question and as an icebreaker or a means of getting people engaged right off the bat.  But the more I found the answer to be “within the Customer Support organization,” the more puzzled I became:

Isn’t the goal of CX, to a degree at least, to drive support out of business? (more…)

By | 2020-10-29T14:46:02+00:00 October 29th, 2020|Categories: CX Strategy, CX Thoughts, Leadership, Process Engineering, ROI of CX|0 Comments

Lead and lag measures

You know I’m all about metrics and measures.  One of the things that made entering the CX profession so attractive to me was that this is a field of study that’s not only based in numbers, it’s starving for people who have an affinity for measuring.  CX is a study that’s founded on measuring…from survey results to Customer habits and attitudes to top-level improvements in your CX KPIs, numbers are all around us.

One topic of confusion I’ve seen a lot over my time is in regard to lead versus lag measures.  Everybody’s got their own opinions and there doesn’t seem to be a textbook answer to what’s what, so take this as simply my theory and how I approach what’s meant when we speak of such things. (more…)

By | 2020-10-15T16:00:46+00:00 October 15th, 2020|Categories: CX Thoughts, Measures & Metrics, Process Engineering|0 Comments

Three uses of your feedback

I’m a big fan, as you know, of negative feedback.  I suggest that CX professionals be greedy for negative feedback.  Since slaps on the back and hoorahs from your most ardent fans don’t really help you improve, you should be eager to hear “suggestions” from your Customers as to how you can better serve them.  Fortunately, there’s rarely a shortage of such inputs.  So what do you do with this feedback?  There are three ways in which you should be using every negative piece of information you receive from your Customers, regardless of the method of transmission: (more…)

By | 2020-09-10T15:50:44+00:00 September 10th, 2020|Categories: CX Thoughts, Process Engineering, VoC|0 Comments

Do something! Process Engineering in your CX program

This is part three of a four-part series of posts about the components of a world-class CX function.  I began last week with an overview of the structure.  Since then I’ve posted on CX strategic alignment and your Voice of the Customer program.  We come now to the action part of this series of articles where I’ll emphasize what you do to improve your CX.  In the last installation we’ll discuss what it takes to build and support a Customer-centric culture.

One of the cliché lines I use with my clients (and anybody else who’ll listen) is that without action, your Voice of the Customer (VoC) program is a lot like the weather:  Sure it impacts you, and yes everybody talks about it, but nobody ever does anything about it.  A good friend of mine and CX guru Nate Brown will often say that too many folks see VoC as the finish line instead of the starting point that it really is.  In fact, if all you’re doing with your CX data is reporting it up to leadership, it’s not likely to be doing much good.  No matter how valuable the insights gleaned from (for example, but surely not limited to) survey data, it’s not going to do you any good if you’re not doing something with it.  First of all it’s a waste of your analyst’s time and effort to simply report it up the chain or put it on a pretty slide if you’re not going to act on it.  Secondly, and more importantly, it’s kind of an insult to your Customers to ask them for their input and not use it to improve their experiences.

So how do you do that? (more…)

By | 2020-10-26T18:40:46+00:00 August 17th, 2020|Categories: CX Strategy, CX Thoughts, Process Engineering|0 Comments

CX: How it all works

In this article I’ll explain the components needed in place to elevate an organization’s Customer Experience.  I won’t go too far in depth into the four parts but rather provide an overview of how they work together with a brief explanation of what they are.  Following, in a continuation of this series of articles, I’ll explain with more specificity how these work (and work together), as they each deserve their own writings.

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By | 2020-08-10T15:31:08+00:00 August 10th, 2020|Categories: Consulting, CX Culture, CX Strategy, CX Thoughts, Process Engineering, VoC|0 Comments

Close the loop on your feedback

You’ve likely heard about the concept and practice of “closing the loop” or a “closed-loop feedback” (CLF) cycle.  What is it, and how does it work?

There are actually a couple types of closed-loop feedback systems depending on whether you’re talking about internal or external feedback.  Internal refers to an employee feedback mechanism where as an external closed-loop feedback system is geared toward the Customer’s inputs and what you do with them.  They’re both important to a healthy Customer-centric organization, and they operate basically the same way, just with different sources of feedback.  I’ll concentrate on that external, or Customer-centric model here, but realize that there’s another application for this CLF system if you want to approach employee experience the same way.

The overall concept of a CLF cycle is that you (as I’ve often emphasized) do something with the feedback you receive.  Rather than just sitting on VoC information or just reporting it, CLFs empower us to actually improve our processes in a focused way thus improving Customers’ future experiences while also showing gratitude to those who offer us their thoughts.  At first glance (and if you just take the term literally from its own label), a closed-loop feedback system is one that simply follows up with the Customer on their input.  Now, that may take on many different forms depending on how you interpret the concept:  Follow-up may be simply replying—perhaps even with an auto-generated, boilerplate, impersonal email—that a Customer’s feedback has been “received.”  Sometimes the follow-up is in the form of self-preservation and reaching out to a Customer to save the experience.  Let’s be honest:  If you don’t find out about a disastrous Customer experience until you’ve received negative feedback is likely to be a lost cause, at least in that instance…that said, sometimes you can recover, and the best experience is sometimes a make-good for what started out as an awful experience.  But even these approaches to a CLF don’t really capture the benefit of such a system.
(more…)

By | 2020-08-29T19:47:14+00:00 July 31st, 2020|Categories: CX Thoughts, Measures & Metrics, Process Engineering, VoC|0 Comments