Even if the topic of customer focus has been established in your company for a long time, that doesn’t mean that it’s actually being fulfilled. It may be stated in the values or the strategy. It may be on the management’s agenda. And yet, working in CX daily, you feel that the mindset is not yet where it could be. That you or your team have to pull the blinkers down over and over again, that when the going gets tough, customer focus loses priority. You invest so much energy to motivate and inspire customer-centric thinking wherever possible.
Then pause for a moment. Take a breath. I was there before, and I was running around like a maniac every day. Can you relate? The problem is: you can’t see the big picture. Your focus is on the details and getting stuff done. If you want to achieve a successful transformation, you have to go back a few steps and look at the big picture.
The biggest mistake I see CX Teams make in transformation is that they focus mainly on using and teaching CX tools. But CX tools are only a small part of the overall transformation of an organization. It is like focusing on just one tile of a Rubik’s Cube instead of looking at the whole cube.
To successfully manage a customer centricity change is like playing with a Rubik’s Cube:
- You have to be strategic and systematic. You have to observe the cube closely and come up with a plan. In the context of your company it means: you need to know the culture of your company, find out the dynamics of the service chain, define target groups, determine target skills, and much more. This is the basis for developing a successful transformation masterplan.
- You have to be flexible and adaptable. Once you start the transformation, you have to look at the organization. Assess what has an impact, how the dynamics change and make adjustments to your masterplan. Turn the Rubikub, look at it, turn it again and again and again.
An organization is not a brick, it is a living being. Changing it requires good observation, adaptability and the ability to cope with the uncertainties that come with the process. But the result is very rewarding. For me, there is nothing more beautiful than to see those blinkers fall by themselves. How ideology becomes mindset. How colleagues develop a genuine joy in customer-centered thinking.
One of the most beautiful developments I have seen in my career was that of a debt collection team that I was privileged to accompany. In just a few months they developed from pure money collectors to solution partners who understood customers in distress. They were no longer the team that saw the "non-paying customers" but assumed that there was a person who needed help. It was a profound mindset change that led to a significant increase in the payment morale of customers in need. The little money they had, they gave to the company that treated them with respect and goodwill.
This is what a transformation to Customer Centricity can achieve.
This is Customer Experience Management coming to life.
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