We now know that a successful customer experience management framework requires coordination. Or, in other words, the first level requires stable foundations. Customer experience management is the tool and process to make more sense out of the things that you do, as well as give structure to the things you need to do ongoing. There are four foundations for this:
1. Organisational attitudes
An attitude is a settled way of thinking or feeling about something. In some cases, this thinking or feeling can be quite negative, which is often not referred to as a ‘negative attitude’ rather having an ‘attitude’. The culture of your organisation is really a collective term for all of the attitudes that exist. Therefore, around customer service we need to ensure that these attitudes are in-sync with each other but also are reflected on the outside of the organisation. When you define what these attitudes are and how they make up the DNA of the organisation, they can be cascaded right through your specific efforts like recruitment, training and the like.
2. People behaviours
With attitudes being thinking and feeling, behaviours are all around how we act and conduct ourselves, specifically toward others. In some cases, people behave differently to their attitudes, which is something that cannot happen if your organisation is to have a focus on customer service. Our behaviours are seen through our interactions, which means it is here where you need to define what interactions you want your staff to have with customers and how you want them to conduct themselves. It firstly starts off with the example you set and the internal interactions, followed by the ways we interact with customers —including our interactions with technology.
3. Knowing and understanding customers
Memory is the faculty by which the mind stores and remembers information. Therefore, in order to leave a positive memory with our customers we need to know them and understand them well. I’ve previously talked about how data is available the instant you have a customer, but we often forget that there is so much more information buried deeper, that we need to dig for. We often think that you can only learn more about a customer when you are in front of them, which is partly true. But, if you take the time to study your customers when they are not with you, there is so much more to learn. This is the part where you look at your organisation and customers from an industry perspective, right through to their emotional journey and then onward to their individual needs. There will be so many opportunities that present themselves for you to leave positive memories with them.
4. Increasing the value for customers
At all times, we should be aiming to increase the value of our products and services with customers. This moves beyond the point in the moment when we are at service to them, right through to the total brand experience they receive at each and every point of contact with us. Therefore, it is at this point where we need to not so much look for, but find ways to make their experience worth more than it could be perceived. This is the part where you look at your brand consistency, the way we deliver service, the timing of our service, even the physical and virtual environment and how we can be creative in order to continuously make it better for our customers.
Chris Smoje is a customer service speaker, trainer, facilitator and founder of the DIME™ Customer Service approach. Chris works with organisations and their people to develop a common interest and excitement about delivering exceptional customer service results: www.dimecustomerservice.com