Fortunately, or perhaps unfortunately, customer obsession starts with you, the CEO. Don’t expect any progress if you and your executive team don’t commit heart and soul. Obsession is an emotional state, and the emotion of an organization flows from leadership.
Once you have understood and adopted that Customer Obsession needs to align with company goals, you need to take it one step further: operationalizing it. Values must dictate day to day decisions.
It is not all, to sip coffee in the morning in the office kitchen with your peers and discuss the latest CX trends, but then move on with your daily tasks as if it weren’t related. Because it really is, and this is what we are going to look at here.
Let’s take for example McDonalds – we all know that they are big on F A S T food, Drive-in burgers and fries. Now, your expectations when going to McDonalds, are not that you are going to have a healthy meal with fresh produce, but it doesn’t matter – because you’re here to eat on the go and get it fast. So what happens if McDonalds builds on the value of FAST but takes the average 15min to prepare your order? Expectations right out of the door they go – because if you do not align company goals, with values and more specifically operational processes then it leads to a failed CX, and inevitably – a disappointed customer.
Point being – the vision must start with the leaders, then pushed across the entire organization until delivery & to push it even one step further: until the advocacy stage. In other words, it’s time to breakdown the silos and communicate one message.
But it does not end here. This is unfortunately, (or fortunately for the more advanced) one stone in the edifice.
You need to define what your CX strategy is, in order to define values and to know exactly what you need to operationalize. To sum it up, let’s put it in a diagram form:“Eight years into the age of the customer, just 15% of enterprises are customer-obsessed. Our research finds that executives agree with the idea… they just struggle to put it into practice.” Forrester, 2020
So if we put a side the new challenge of successfully developing and putting into action customer centricity in every effort of the company – let’s look at what we believe should be the operator mode
It starts by BELIEVING. In order for a company to act upon measures, they need to believe. But this belief must come from somewhere.. it usually comes from a culture. And who creates and maintains this culture? Yes, you’ve guessed it.. the CEO, the leaders..
In this case, we are talking about Customer-Centricity, Customer OBESESSION. As CEO, you have to clearly articulate the reasons to pursue obsession, but also, and more importantly – link obsession to company goals.