It makes sense that if employees are engaged with your organisational goals, customer experience reaps the rewards. The data tells the same story – companies with excellent customer experience have 1.5x better employee engagement than those rated ‘poor’ for CX.
It’s not just theory, either – major organizations such as Adobe are not only recognising but putting into practice a strong ideological link between employee and customer experience.
Here are some ideas for how to make it happen.
Recognize the limits of financial incentives
In general, our data suggests that paying extra in the hope of driving any kind of change has limited effectiveness. Although many major organisations do link remuneration directly to customer experience metrics such as NPS or CSAT scores, this kind of material incentive is often geared towards superficial and short-term motivations, rather than deep cultural change.
There’s a slight caveat to this though when it comes to rewarding behaviours rather than metrics. If you can identify behaviors that unequivocally drive positive customer experiences – always responding to emails within 24 hours, for example – maintaining those standards can be positively reinforced by being linked to a reward.
Lead by example
Don’t just focus your efforts on changing the behaviors of frontline staff – set an example throughout the business by making sure desirable actions and attitudes are highly visible. You can even designate a team of CX ambassadors whose actions model the change you’re looking to see. They can be available for mentorship and guidance too.
Break open the siloes
Where does CX sit within your business? Is there a dedicated CX team, or is it part of your customer service department’s objectives? The truth is that great customer experiences are rooted in every part of an organization, including with those team members who might not ever have direct contact with a customer. Building awareness of the value of CX across your business, just as you would with other horizontal functions such as HR or IT, is an investment well worth making.
Consider having CX champions in every department and empower those people to be the voice of the customer in your organisation.
Empower CX leadership
Ideas don’t make things happen – people do. That’s why it’s essential to tap into your organisation’s leadership abilities when you’re engineering cultural changes. To dip into John Kotter’s model for organizational change, you need to “form a powerful coalition” who will help embed the importance of CX values and begin driving change using their influence. Make it a priority to get buy-in from leaders in every part of your business. It’s essential that they walk the talk.
Use concrete results to dispel any ‘fuzzy feel-good’ perceptions
One of the stumbling blocks to creating a CX-driven company culture is the idea that having happy customers is a ‘fluffy’, imprecise or nice-to-have business objective. In fact, hard data has proven time and again that investment in CX reaps concrete rewards for businesses. Customer experience has been recognized as a key differentiator for consumer choice and loyalty, with some even predicting that it will outstrip price and product by the year 2020.