Customer Experience (CX) has evolved from tools and technology to the value it brings in informing the business and helping it achieve its desired goals.
A human-centered approach is essential
Human-centered experience has a pivotal role in driving business outcomes, and it’s a two-way streeet. To ensure the employee’s engagement with the company on a human-to-human basis, company leaders must demonstrate that same human-to-human engagement with the employee. Olga Potaptseva, Executive Director, Membership, for the Customer Institute and the Founding Director for the European Customer Consultancy, supports this opinion. She considers a strong employee engagement program to be one of the foundations to drive business outcomes.
Olga says, “it’s important for companies to have employees willing to go on the customer-centricity journey. It goes beyond a traditional HR approach. It’s engaging hearts and minds. It’s conveying customer centricity in a way that people can relate to.”
Providing employees with opportunities, necessary tools, and empowerment, but most importantly, showing them that their contribution is genuinely valued and appreciated, creates happy employees who want to engage beyond their routine responsibilities. This leads to employees caring for the customer and going the extra mile to achieve customer satisfaction. This is why company leaders should focus on creating a great experience for employees.
Great corporate culture creates great EX
However, great employee experience (EX) can only be built in a great corporate culture that company leaders must cultivate. Empathic engagement is a key element for both employees and customers if you want to drive them to loyalty and advocacy. Olga is noticing a rise in EX focus to drive customer centricity and business outcomes.
She also says that shared purpose, relatability, and community will become focal points in how employees are going to want to work in the future. Choosing employers based on how their values align with their own has been a growing trend among millennials and Gen-Z groups, and supports the above.
Developing CX & EX is an investment, treat it accordingly
Ultimately, leaders are creating a strong EX not only with the aim of improving CX but also to help their organizations survive and thrive. Research shows that investing in employees improves productivity, job satisfaction, and staff retention. This decreases recruitment and operational costs, and increases profits.
Building strong CX and EX will require financial resources as any other form of investment.
CX leaders getting buy-in from the C-suite has been a challenge for a while. In Olga’s opinion, one of the most frequent reasons can be failure on behalf of CX leaders to explain to executive leadership in terms that resonate with them how investing in EX and CX will drive desired business outcomes. She says, “as CX leaders we have to have very tangible deliverables to drive from the CX program.” The only way to get the company’s leadership to invest in CX and EX is by showing them the direct impact it’s going to have on the bottom line, and this impact must resonate with the C-suite.
Olga advises CX leaders to be more diligent with data, understand the voice of the customer and the impact it has on the business, and participate with a customer-centric perspective in real business projects. This will help them engage more efficiently with senior leadership. CX leaders should understand which projects are important to the business and design meaningful contributions they can make to those projects. When CX leaders are able to help, they score influence points, and they will be able to better position CX and EX projects among the company’s executives. This, in its turn, will prompt CX adoption. It’s a common opinion that CX is a top-down endeavor. Actually, CX is both bottom-up and top-down. Having middle managers and employees on your side because they understand and believe in the purpose of CX will give you more leverage in influencing the executive team.
The Customer Institute helps CX leaders build and sustain strong CX and EX initiatives. It is a not-for-profit, global organization whose mission is to be the go-to source for B2B, B2C, and public-sector organizations to excel through customer centricity. The Customer Institute searches, develops, and promotes best practices to prove the value of customer centricity to help organizations expedite corporate growth. Its leadership includes some of the best thought leaders, consultants, practitioners, innovators, and scholars in the global CX space today. Through its certification and assessment programs, the Customer Institute enables and recognizes excellence in customer centricity.
Joining the Customer Institute as a corporate member gives organizations a competitive advantage of being a CX leader in their sector. The Customer Institute is currently accepting new members. To join as a member or to find out more information, contact us at https://customer-institute.org/membership/.