Written by Elisabete Zubiarrain for Buljan & Partners Consulting
Some years ago CRM was the acronym in fashion, but now, in an ever-changing world it is the moment of Customer Experience.
The customer-centric business is not that new. Many years ago small storekeepers found out that their clients are also decision makers and may decide to abandon them at any time.How do you get a customer to stay? That is the big question and even though the answer is not unique, the way to achieve it is getting more and more defined.
In the “universe of products”, variety is huge and technological similarities are even greater every day. In the “universe of price”, war is manifest and the true value of things or products is a changing priority. What moves people is emotion, the one you recognise related to a product or a service.
How to achieve to deliver emotions? This is the best starting point to define the roadmap a company should follow to define a memorable customer experience.
There are many tools which support this roadmap but even though we are hear a lot about Customer Experience, it is not a tool, it’s a roadmap. A roadmap which may have different destinations, as not all companies think of getting to the same target, not all go to the same destination.
Once the destination has been chosen, the roadmap must be created and for that it is important to have the right tools. Some of these tools may be the services of the best professionals that walk the path with the company throughout the whole process; others may be technological but another fundamental tool are the team members. Each and every one of the team members of a company has an impact on the outcome of the chosen roadmap.
How to build a Customer Centric team? That’s the key if you want to count on the best human “tool” in the company.
There are two ways to achieve this: hire people on board who already have a customer centric orientation thanks to previous experiences either professionally or personally. You may also guide the existing but not so customer centric team. Both options are responsibility of talent managers within the company but these managers need to be the most customer orientated in the company right after the CEO and Management.
The correct approach to talent management is not always the cheapest, so support by the CEO and Management must be unconditional.
The basis for this support can be illustrated through a Stephen R. Covey quote, author of “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People”.
“Always treat your employees exactly as you want them to treat your best customers.”
Linking this to results is fundamental for directors in order to see a return on investment, but the first transformation is almost always at employee level which generates a necessary top down cultural change.
In short, the decision to orientate the company towards the customer needs to be made with the top management as sponsor, defining the target and defining the roadmap. The roadmap consists of a cultural change, starts with the managers and includes all present and future team members. This will generate memorable emotions in our customers which will not only turn them loyal, but will also make them want to recommend us.
Small storekeepers already knew it – this is not just any other tendency.
Elisabete Zubiarrain is HR responsible at Buljan & Partners Consulting. Eli is specialist in Talent management and HR recruiting accross several industries at Buljan since 2010.