It seems to be human nature to focus on the unnecessary but more attractive/compelling/interesting/entertaining distractions instead of the stalwart/steady/reliable but boring items in our everyday lives. How many moments do we give to social media, Buzzfeed, Candy Crush, etc? We do this in spite of having real deadlines, goals, and responsibilities.
Sometimes the way we approach customer experience is no different. Here are some thoughts on ways to let go of the items that maybe don’t matter as much as we’d like them to.
1. Stop focusing on trying to WOW your customers if your everyday operations are messed up.
I find this theme a lot. Some marketing director or CEO reads the latest on customer experience and is determined to WOW their customers. They do this with PR stunts or branded “gifts” that don’t mean much to customers who are frustrated with their daily experience with the brand. Next time you are about to have a meeting on WOW, ask yourself, how are we doing with the NOW.
Start there if it’s broken. Fix it first.
2. Stop tracking numbers that don’t create action or results.
Metrics can be a bit addictive. We love watching those line graphs move up and down in their tiny overnight dances. We get so excited when we witness a whole point increase!
But then what? If we spend all of our time reporting the .01% increase and the result is just us celebrating over it, we’re doomed.
Focus on what needs attention, then do something about it. Streamline those dashboards! Don’t celebrate the small victories if they are just a blip on the long-term journey. Raj Sivasubramanian from Ebay shared a lot about the dangers of being too metric-centric on our podcast here. It’s worth a listen if you think you might be at risk!
3. Stop fussing about your logo.
Yes, we must keep up appearances. But spending time on logos and branding and calling that customer experience doesn’t serve anyone. Your customers really don’t consider the pixels as much as you might think. They care about ease of use, design and getting stuff done. If the logo is “tired” that doesn’t mean it’s broken.
If your customers know your logo, but they complain about what happens with your company, there is a bigger hill to climb than freshening up the branding.
4. Stop thinking they all think like you do.
You are in the trenches of your organization daily. You see the internal battles, know the obstacles and hear all the praise and complaints. This puts you (and your brain) in a totally different place than a customer who may only interact with your company once a year or once a week. It’s not enough to say “we have limited resources” to fix something. You need to think differently.
You need to ask customers for their opinions and not color them with your own.
5. Stop comparing your company to the latest customer experience darling.
It’s easy to say we want to be “the Uber” or “the Zappos” of concrete demolition companies. But what does that mean?
If you have a totally different business model, you need a totally different approach. Yes, you can aim to deliver superior customer service like Zappos, or provide on-demand service like Uber, but don’t throw those phrases around and expect your employees to magically change the business. You need to set real goals and have a customer experience mission that works for YOUR company.
There is so much to be done around customer experience. Let’s not make it harder by focusing on things that we should really let go.