Taking Action on feedback from customers and employees critical to developing and maintain relationships and cultivating fierce loyalty which bring customers back to your business over and over again. Sometimes the action that needs to be taken can be as easy as:
Being available and easily accessible
Greeting customers genuinely and promptly
Providing a quick follow-up
Meeting a commitment or deadline
Communicating in plain simple language.
Other times more complex changes are needed to ensure a superior customer experience is delivered consistently.
Regardless of the scope, all businesses can improve customer experience by
Shifting their focus to the needs of the customer
Listening to understand rather than to respond
Designing a meaningful experience which leaves no critical touchpoint to chance
Be sure that a customer-centric culture is in place before more sophisticated tools and technologies are implemented. If the foundation is not there, the tools and technologies alone will not help improve customer experience.
For more details on engaging employees and getting their buy-in on initiatives, be sure to check out the video resources titled “How to Gather Voice of the Employee for Your CX Initiative” and “Voice of The Employee: The Missing Link to Customer Experience”.
To achieve sustainable results, keep in mind that customer experience improvements are change initiatives on steroids. They require a meticulous, thorough change management plan. Implementing improvements requires a sincere desire and commitment to change from all levels of the organization.
Diligent focus on “making change stick” is critical to the success of all CX improvement initiatives. As you plan out your initiative, thoroughly evaluate for potential change impacts to people, processes, products and technology. Create a rigorous change management plan that not only gets everyone on board and in agreement on the change(s), but also frequently monitors and measures the change over a period of 1 year. Be ready to be agile and adjust the execution plan as needed.
To significantly improve the probability of success, gain buy-in and support from leaders, employees and customers. Engage them by:
Letting them help define and prioritize the improvements
Letting them help shape the measures of success
Letting them name the project or initiative
Regularly communicating progress to customers and employees
5 steps to the Design Thinking Model
Check out the Video and Web Resources for more details.
What do your customers feel in the current state? What do you want them to feel or experience in the future? Why? How will you know that you’ve succeeded?
When it comes down to taking action, be sure to think like a human… think like your customers and employees. Consider all the types of customers that are interacting with you. Their diversity spans not only nationality, ethnic and religious diversity, but also generational preferences, education, and economic influencers.
The Design Thinking Model is great way to inject the human element into the design of the new experience you want to create.
The Interaction Design Foundation at www.interaction-design.org describes it as “Design Thinking is a design methodology that provides a solution-based approach to solving problems. It’s extremely useful in tackling complex problems that are ill-defined or unknown, by understanding the human needs involved, by re-framing the problem in human-centric ways, by creating many ideas in brainstorming sessions, and by adopting a hands-on approach in prototyping and testing. Understanding these five stages of Design Thinking will empower anyone to apply the Design Thinking methods in order to solve complex problems that occur around us — in our companies, in our countries, and even on the scale of our planet.”
Finally, don’t underestimate the value and critical importance of communication. Provide regular progress updates to your customers and employees. Let them continue shaping your vision and execution as you and they learn more. Check out the video titled “Improve NPS Without Focusing on the Score” on the Video and Web Resources page for examples on how this one aspect can make or break CX improvement initiative.
As you can see, great experiences don’t just happen… each one is specifically designed with intent and purpose to yield a desired response, emotion or feeling. Don’t take any short cuts. Leverage all the tools and resources you have. Do everything you can to create an easy, effortless experience for your customers and employees. They will thank you for it in loyalty, re-purchase and word of mouth to their friends, family and colleagues.