Innovate or Die…

If you are looking for Innovative leadership then this will inspire you onwards and upwards. Shared by one of South Africa’s most progressive business leaders, Roland Naidoo:

Having just left the football field with my 5 year old son I was finally motivated to write this blog. Why? Trying to teach him to kick the football in the correct way, it dawned on me in that moment I was doing to him what every organised structure is designed to do.

As I caught myself I paused, looked at him and said, “My boy, you figure it out, play, have fun, and find new ways to kick a football.”

  • Be the doctrine of the how and the why.
  • Be the standard of the where and the when.
  • Be the one and only way.
  • Have the right answers!

New Realisation

The dawning of that realisation underpins why innovation is so important to me. Innovation should by definition not be defined Ior it will simply succumb to every other conformity we know. It should live in every one of us.

This is the need to ask ourselves ‘why?’. Why am I doing this in this way? Is there a better way? Is there a different way? Is there even a need for this at all?

A spirit of innovation is not technology or wonderfully bombastic ideas, but the courage to question our education, rules, bonafide truths and all so-called absolutes in between. Know that your bravery will be rewarded with knowledge; am I. Know you were courageous enough to acknowledge you were wrong and move forward.

In the future when you find yourself saying or even thinking thoughts like this is how it’s always been; this is the way we do things; there is no other way; this is impossible; these are the rules; some things can’t be questioned, stop, take a breath, and find a new way to kick a football.

Roland

Footnote (from Steve)

So go find that ball and a new way to score for your team!

You can reach Roland at: Roland.Naidoo@multichoice.co.za

6 Ways to Transform Process and the Customer Experience (at the Same Time)

Steve Towers Keynotes

Where do I start?

I was keynoting a conference in Europe recently, and senior executives in the room were getting the rationale behind moving Outside-In. However, there seemed to be two perplexed groups in the place.

One was what a refer to as the ‘traditional process guys’, and the other ‘the customer is first people’, and interestingly they both asked the same question “Where do we start?”

My honest and most direct answer is “You do not have a choice. You have got to start where you are and go from there!” OK, I get what you’re thinking, how could they take that away and begin to transform their organizations?

So, I walked them through TWO distinctly different ways to navigate to Outside-In working and practice, depending on your mindset, enterprise history and maturity. For the two categories of customer in the room, the NEEDS are the same, just the way they navigate to achieving them is different.

What are the Results?

From a results perspective, both approaches focus on winning the triple crown, that is Improving Service, Growing Revenues and Reducing Complexity (and hence lowering costs).

ApproachProcess EngineeringCustomer First
FocusProcess is the starting pointStarts with Customer Needs
ScopeReengineering the ProcessesAligning everything to Customer Needs
IntentionBuild out from Process to Department to Division to EnterpriseArticulate Successful Customer Outcomes and Remove the complexity of things that do not contribute to it
BenefitsLocal wins building to business-wide transformationImmediate delivery against Triple Crown benefits
Executive Buy-inSlow burn, however when they see the benefits and ‘get it’ the support is significantStarts at the strategic level so influences everything the organization does
RecommendationIf your remit is just ‘improving processes’ this approach will get you their steadily, however, the challenges facing traditional business are seismic so is there time? So, make immediate gains but push hard for more quickly.By demonstrating the value of ‘customer first’ in terms of the triple crown the enterprise can align quickly and effectively. Importantly avoid the ‘soft and fluffy’ sentiments expressed by many in the customer experience world.

How can I Implement?

Back in 2006 the BPG launched the CEMMethod™ and built out an approach, using the 50+ techniques based on global next practice from companies like Virgin, Zara, BMW, Zappos, Apple and Emirates. Since then more than 3,000 companies in 116 countries have become accredited and certified to transform their processes and organizations.

Now in version 11, the choice you make in deployment is based on your ambition and remit within the enterprise.
If you are a leader needing to embrace the digital customer ‘Customer First’ leaps out as the main option. Alternatively, if you are in a traditional process-based business (lean, six sigma, BPM etc.) the more conservative ‘process engineering’ approach may be preferred.

You can access the following resources that will help you make an informed choice:

CEMMethod™ – review its potency and pedigree:
www.cemmethod.com

Outside-In The Secret of 21st century companies (free access): http://bit.ly/StevesOIBook

The Accredited Customer Experience Program 2018-19: https://www.bpgroup.org/acxp1819.html

The Certified Process Professional Program: https://www.bpgroup.org/certifiedprocessprofessional.html

I look forward to guiding you to transformation when you are ready!

The Ten Commandments of Customer Experience Management

It is good to have a guide in life. Many of us share political creeds, religious beliefs and codes of honour to guide our decision making. Wouldn’t it be crazy good to have the same for the doctrine of Customer Experience?
When I co-authored the best selling book “CEM Success without Exception” back in 2006 Customer Experience Management was in its infancy.

Now twelve years later we have the accumulated wisdom of the giants of Customer Experience Management, proof that focus on Successful Customer Outcomes, Outside-In and working backwards are fundamental to becoming a winning organization.

It is with these thoughts in mind and the worthy experience of many that I set pen to paper to craft these tenets as guidelines for all of us seeking to maximise our deployment of Customer Experience Management.

1. Customers are first, center and last for everything.

Understanding that all the work an organization undertakes ultimately stems from a customer interaction is key. Work to engineer every experience to the optimum.

2. Listen to the questions customers ask you.

Resist voice of customer surveys (they are biased and unrepresentative) and focus on understanding and articulating needs – the Needs of the Customer.

3. Stop selling and let people buy.

Customers are now prosumers and most know what they want and how to get it. You will not win them if you force sell; in fact, you will make enemies of them.

4. Map the Complete Experience.

This is both the stuff the customer sees (the customer journey and the brand promise) and the work that takes place across the rest of the organization to support all interactions. Combine those the Employee Experience and the Customer Experience you are nearing the Complete Experience; these are not separate things but should be viewed through the same lens.

The CEMMethod.com can help you in seeing the Complete Experience. 

See also 6 step ‘Duck Theory’ videos: http://bit.ly/DuckTheoryJames

5. Create your brand and be the brand you create.

Customers develop trust when you say what’ll you do, and then do what you say. Conversely, do not project yourself as something you are not.

6. Be consistent and truthful across all your channels.

Customers will interact in ways and times that suit them, so ensure you keep a coherent message across all experiences.

7. Act on People liking people.

Do not hide behind automation, whether that is voice systems, web interactions or even text messaging. The most intimate relationships are formed with people, not computers.

Keep in front of the song.

8. Creating memorable experiences requires anticipation and coordination.

Fix problems before they happen, and when problems do arise (they will) pull out the stops to put things right.

9. Design every customer experience for the category of customer.

You should never ever treat all customers in the same way. Personalization and direct communication are proven winners in an era of standardization.

10. Employees are your first customers.

If they ain’t happy your paying customers won’t be either. Treat your people well and let them know they are the most critical part of the brand and the complete customer experience.


Join us for Complete Experience Management with coaching, training, consultancy and Certification at www.bpgroup.org 

The 3 Significant Reasons Why You Need The CEMMethod

CEMMethod guides the CX Management Strategy

Do you know the CEMMethod?

Born in 2001. Launched in 2006. Now in version 11.

The Successful Technique You Can Use to Transform Your Customer Experiences and Lower Costs, Improve Service & Grow Revenues simultaneously

Dr W. Edwards Deming’s famous quote “If you can’t describe what you are doing as a process, you don’t know what you’re doing” is truer today than ever in an increasingly customer-centric Outside-In world.

Perhaps we should upgrade the quote to encompass the focus on the customer?

“If you can’t describe what you are doing as relevant to a Successful Customer Outcome, you shouldn’t ought to be doing it”

Progressive Outside-In businesses understand this truth (think Amazon, Starbucks, BMW and Emirates) who are connecting everything they do to delivering these Successful Customer Outcomes. If activities and systems do not explicitly contribute to customer success they scrap them, and in doing so costs fall away, service improves and naturally, revenues grow.

Think about that for a moment from the customers perspective. It is certainly more pleasurable if interactions are simple and smoother. And if these experiences involve buying stuff, customers come back again and again for more. Even in public service, it stands to reason that reducing complexity will release more resources to do more meaningful work that delivers greater value to citizens.

So how would you approach your existing Customer Experiences and associated processes to move in this direction? Is there a formula that can be applied that is easy to use and produces immediate results?

Indeed, there is! We refer to this formula within the CEMMethod™, an approach developed originally in association with companies like Virgin and Southwest Airlines. The method, originally released in 2006, is now in version 11 and includes 50+ techniques that significantly improve business performance and customer success.

One of these techniques within the CEMMethod™ is referred to as the ‘Disruption Factor’ and quite simply allows you to calculate the potential for improvement in any Customer Experience. Additionally, it helps you pinpoint the areas that would benefit from immediate attention, and in doing so win the triple crown (lower costs, improved service, higher revenues).

If you want to know more about applying the Disruption Factor in your organization join us at the upcoming webinar register your interest here.

I will see you on the inside!

Additional Resources:

>> Disruption Factor Webinar –https://events.genndi.com/channel/BPGDisruptionFactor

>> Certified & Accredited CX Training
www.bpgroup.org/training

> More about me and the companies doing this stuff
www.stevetowers.com

> Rockstar CX with James Dodkins
http://www.rockstar.cx/podcast.html

> CEMMethod™
www.cemmethod.com

Recent Blogs | Schedule for end of 2018 | Announcement of the winner of the Draw

It might be Summer here in the northern hemisphere, however, we are busier than ever!
#CX #ACXM #CPP

>> UPCOMING ACX AND CPP MASTERS SESSIONS <<
(they fill quick so book quick!) <<
https://www.bpgroup.org/training.html

CPPM Johannesburg July 16-19
https://johannesburg_cppm.eventbrite.com

ACXM Johannesburg August 20-23
https://acxm_johannesburg.eventbrite.com

CPPM Melbourne August 27-30
https://cpp_melbourne_aug.eventbrite.com

ACXM Melbourne September 3-6
https://acxm_melbourne_sep.eventbrite.com

ACXM Denver September 24-27
https://denveracxm.eventbrite.com

ACXM Washington DC October 22-25
https://washingtondc_acxm.eventbrite.com

ACXM Johannesburg October 22-25
https://acxm_johannesurg_oct2018.eventbrite.com

ACXM Dubai October 28-31
https://dubaiacxm_oct2018.eventbrite.com

ACXM London December 10-13
https://londonacxm.eventbrite.com

https://www.bpgroup.org/acxp1819.html

>> RECENT BLOG POSTS <<
https://www.cxobsession.com

> One Day CX Transformation in Denver
> Customer Experience & Process Improvement transformation
> SIX proven steps to introduce the CX Management Office
> Successful Personal Outcomes Relaunches

>> BPG PRIZE DRAW For JULY <<

The winner for this month is (drum roll)
** Craig Burtenshaw ACXM® **
from Australia who will now receive the USD 500

https://www.linkedin.com/in/craigburtenshaw/

So how do you get your hands on five hundred bucks?

Simple, put your qualification after your name!
Here is the list:
ACXM® – Accredited Customer Experience Master®
ACXP® – Accredited Customer Experience Professional®
ACXC® – Accredited Customer Experience Champion®
CPPM® – Certified Process Professional Master®
CPP® – Certified Process Professional®
CPPC® – Certified Process Professional Champion®

So change your LinkedIn title, drop me a note on LinkedIn to say you have done it and we will put you in the monthly draw… oh and good luck!!

Next month we are featuring some of the recent Rockstar CX interviews from James Dodkins

See you very soon!
Cheers,
Steve Towers, CEO, ACXC and CPP Champion

One Day CX Transformation in Denver

The 10th Accredited Customer Experience Professional returns to Denver on Monday, September 24th.


With the latest and most effective CX techniques and toolkits wrapped in the CEMMethod, this is sure to be a terrific one-dayer.

https://www.bpgroup.org/denveracxp.html 

Customer experience has never been more important.

89% of companies now expect to compete mostly on the basis of customer experience.

87% of buyers will pay more for a better customer experience.

ACXP attendees will learn the world famous CEMMethod. The CEMMethod was created in 2001 when BPG was working with the Virgin Group. They realised together that to progress in an ever-changing world, you have to have an explicit, outside-in focus on the customer in everything you do..

Since then, the CEMMethod has evolved, consolidating tools, techniques and mindsets from some of the best performing and most innovative companies in the world. People like Apple, BMW, Bentley, IBM, Amazon, Emirates Airlines, Zara, Zappos, State Farm, Disney, Google, Facebook, Uber and many more.

https://www.bpgroup.org/denveracxp.html

Professionals using the CEM Method are simultaneously lowering costs, growing revenues and delivering outstanding customer experience in more than 4,000 companies around the world. These individuals are the driving force behind some of the world’s best performing organizations.

The secret to the CEM Method’s success lies in its ability to link external customer experience to internal back-office operations. This is a claim that no other method can make. Learn the methodology that the best-performing companies in the world are using as their customer experience backbone.

Please join us in Denver!

https://www.bpgroup.org/denveracxp.html

 

SIX proven steps to introduce the CX Management Office

Companies wishing to build customer loyalty in the midst of a world being digitally transformed need to introduce the Customer Experience Management Office.

Existing approaches such as Program Management Offices do not address the need of the organization to become customer-centric. According to the Project Management Institutes definition “PMO’s serve as a means to standardize project-related governance processes and facilitate sharing of resources and tools. Others serve as centers of excellence, and still, others align project and program work to corporate strategy across an enterprise.”

1. Evolving from a Program Management Office (PMO) to a Customer Experience Management Office (CXMO).


You may be doing things right, but are you doing the right things?

There is a requirement to call out the need for Customer Centricity in literally everything the enterprise does.

Recently I was working with a global retailer who claimed that they managed Customer Experience via the projects orchestrated by the PMO, so I asked for their measures of success within the PMO.

Interestingly the primary metrics focused on three things – coming in on time, to the budget and achieving agreed project deliverables. So, digging deeper revealed the ‘deliverables’ were mostly aligned with functional objectives and only 15% of those talked to the challenge of becoming customer centric.  Even more so – less than 10% talked about joined-up thinking across the silos on behalf of better customer experiences.

Therefore, evolving the PMO to a CXMO is required to centralise the enterprise-wide approach to ensure a consistent and strategic effort.

Find out more and register for the CXMO webinar > JOIN HERE <

Connecting everyone to Successful Customer Outcomes

2. The CXMO is not another functional forever specialism

This isn’t another excuse for empire building. The strategic CX justification revolves around enhanced/redefined Customer Experiences that deliver improved service, lower costs and higher revenues (referred to as the ‘triple crown’) initially from the enterprise-wide consolidation of customer-centric effort, then through systematically aligning everything to contribute to Successful Customer Outcomes.

Hence the CXMO usually has a limited lifespan of 3-4 years as once the discipline is established and everyone is aligned to Successful Customer Outcomes the resources can be devolved back into the business.

In summary, establishing a CXMO is a systematic and strategic initiative.

Co-ordinating everyone, from the boardroom to the tea room, is essential to ensure the shift from the industrial age to the customer centricity age delivers practically and immediately.

Find out more and register for the CXMO webinar > JOIN HERE <

3. Harnessing the disparate CX efforts requires a CXMO.

The majority of people can agree on the valuable benefits of becoming customer centric (triple crown etc.) however departments and divisions will need to be aligned.

For example, the IT systems underpinning current operations were never designed with customer centricity in mind. Their purpose was to automate tasks and activities associated with functional activities such as Accounting, Sales, Customer Call Centers and so on. Sometimes there are efforts to integrate data across these silos but even enterprise-wide systems still have a focus on outputs, rather than delivering well-crafted Outcomes.

Hence migrating the critical to mission systems requires a strategic, top-down driven effort, so that changes are planned, consistent and co-ordinated against customer experience priorities for every part of the organization.

Find out more and register for the CXMO webinar > JOIN HERE <

  1. Reward structures

    A significant challenge impacts the Rewards and Remuneration structures. In industrial Age, thinking employees are rewarded for doing things, and not necessarily in delivering results.

    A simple way to test this hypothesis is to look at the metrics that drive business performance and see whether there are a majority of the measures targeted at counting outputs, rather than customer outcomes. Typical call centres, for example, will be measuring things like Number of Calls, Average Handle Time, Abandon rates and so on. How many of these does the customer actually care about?

    Progressive Customer Centric companies shift the emphasis to measuring the Customer Outcome desired. This fundamental shift in the metrics requires that employees are rewarded for delivering results, rather than completing tasks, and therefore a strategic enterprise-wide rethink to ensure all the dots and connected.

Find out more and register for the CXMO webinar > JOIN HERE <

  1. Walking the Talk by the top team requires an enabled CXMO.

    In the example of the Call Center, what is in a name? A lot it would seem. Imagine renaming the Call Center to a Customer Experience Center… Naturally, measures of success should shift to emphasizing the actual customer experience rather than just processing calls as in a production line.

    The top team needs to take ownership of the challenge as all too often they can be heard talking about how important the customer is, how we should be customer focussed, how much the customer matters to us while at the same time reminding the Call Center people that Average Handle Time (AHT) is king.

    If you work in an environment which prioritizes AHT as a leading measure of success your concern about delivering a Successful Customer Outcome becomes secondary. So, it isn’t just about talking the talk, it is about the top team actioning a customer-centric vision supported by creating the right Attitudes, Behaviours and Culture.

    Find out more and register for the CXMO webinar >JOIN HERE<

 

  1. Where to Start?

This really isn’t a choice. You have to start where you are now, move quickly and begin to harvest the benefits of customer-centric operations. An early objective is to examine the deliverables for all current projects and ask the question ‘how will achieving this contribute to improving the customer experience?’.

 

You will meet resistance from some folks who say ‘this project has nothing to do with the customer… it is an IT systems change, a change to internal processes, a new accounting approach etc.’ Your response is the natural ‘everything should contribute to Successful Customer Outcomes, and if we are doing things that don’t they should be stopped’.

Connect the dots to every customer interaction

The principle here is one of connecting the dots through to every customer interaction, which leads to another objective; identifying the critical customer experiences and mapping those in the context of their linkages with internal processes, rules and digital dependencies. This will then produce a prioritised list of targets for improvement.

 

There is no doubt some heavy lifting involved, not least of which is planning the migration from current state PMO to future state CXMO. There are many objectives to consider and your overall approach should be determined by the maturity of your organization.

To review the options join us in the webinar walking through recent CXMO case studies and emerging ‘next practices’.

Find out more and register for the CXMO webinar > JOIN HERE <

 

 

 

 

PARTNERSHIP >> CONFERENCE >> $500 UP FOR GRABS!

BPG News Update:
1. New Partnership Launched
2. Upcoming Recommended Conference (featuring the CX Rockstar)
3. New Competition – Promote yourself and win $500

> New Partnership launched in Australia/New Zealand <<
IQ Group Australia partner with BPG to deliver CEMMethod™ training ‘down-under’ starting this month!
See the Press Release here: http://bit.ly/BPG_PR
Register your interest:
http://www.iqgroup.com.au/customer-experience-management-method-course/

>> CEM Telcoms 2018 <<
Los Angeles, October.
This groundbreaking event features the latest bold discoveries in the realm of CX, including the appearance of our very own James Dodkins as Customer Experience Rockstar.
And yes he is bringing his guitar and will be playing onstage – now that is a conference with a difference.
Steve Towers will also be keynoting on the theme of the Outside-In Strategic Matrix.

Review the event here: https://cemtelecoms.iqpc.com/speakers
Ping me if you want to be there, and we’ll get you a discount:
mailto: steve.towers@bpgroup.org

>>> Competition and Promotion Time! <<
This is how to win $500 by doing something really simple.
Here is my LinkedIn name:
Steve Towers, CEO, ACXC and CPP Champion – https://www.linkedin.com/in/stevetowers/

So how do you get your hands on five hundred bucks?
Simple, put your qualification after your name!
Here is the list:
ACXM – Accredited Customer Experience Master
ACXP – Accredited Customer Experience Professional
ACXC – Accredited Customer Experience Champion
CPPM – Certified Process Professional Master
CPP – Certified Process Professional
CPPC – Certified Process Professional Champion

So change your LinkedIn title, drop me a note on LinkedIn to say you have done it and we will put you in the monthly draw… oh and good luck!!

Ciao for now,
Steve

Bridging the Gap (Industrial Age > Customer Age)

During my encounters with global business leaders, I am frequently asked the question of what is the difference between Lean Six Sigma (LSS) and Customer Experience Management Method (CEMMethod™), a dynamic approach for helping people and enterprises successfully embrace and realise the benefits of the Customer Age. 

 Often the question is prompted as a consequence of the huge investment many large corporations have made into up-skilling their people and processes to LSS. Many times those same executives are querying the return on those investments and hence now looking at more progressive alternative approaches to evolve their business performance.
For those familiar with Outside-In thinking and practice the difference is fundamental however if you haven’t been exposed to such training or working in one of the worlds leading Outside-In companies it would be good to have a short comparison of the key thematic differences.
In the interests of full disclosure, I was an Industrial Engineer qualified as a Lean Master and Six Sigma Master black belt and I see and witness the significant differences every day. Does the implication of the difference mean we should abandon LSS? No, far from it. In fact, integrating the Outside-In perspectives into existing programs is a proven tried and tested way of advancing LSS to the centre stage of winning performance.
Case in point is a North American plastics extrusion company. They had previously been a powerhouse of Six Sigma, grown into and become a Lean ‘Toyota way’ dynamo only to run into the problem of diminishing returns.

Plastic extrusion starts with pallets

Investing just as much in getting better the decreasing returns and eroding margins made it an issue at the top table. In true pragmatic Texan style (their CEO is from Dallas) they embraced Outside-In big time. Over 6-9 months people were upskilled for the Customer Age and then let loose to transform the organization. Not only did they save their bacon they are now a world-leading company. And what do they call their program? OIL – Outside-In Lean. Nice eh?
 So be pragmatic. Look for the bridges from here to there and you can have the best of both worlds.

Table 1: Comparison of some differences between Lean Six Sigma and the CEMMethod.

Element
Lean Six Sigma
Customer Experience Management/Outside-In
Mindset
Industrial Age
Customer Digital Age
Focus
Improve current work
Align to achieve SCO’s
Intent
Process will exist at the end of a review
Processes may be removed
Results
Focused on improving outputs
Focused on delivering Outcomes
Cost reduction
Triple Crown achievement (Cost/Service/Revenue)
Structure
Accepts the functional hierarchy
Proposes the appropriate structure to deliver SCO’s
Techniques
Effect based activity (value/ non-value added – waste identification – SPC etc.)
Causal based activity (what creates the work in the org. then let’s fix the causes)
Intelligent Processes
No mechanism exists to ensure processes are intelligent
Specifically designed to implement and mature intelligent processes
Customer
End to End working e.g. SIPOC
Centric working – the customer is at the heart of everything that happens
Are at the end and the beginning of processes
Are enlightened, Promiscuous, Rebellious, Prosumer, Multi-channel, high expectations
Enterprise objectives
Operational and tactical. Aims to fix process.
Strategic and Operational. Aims to implement a sustainable architecture.
Scope
Process based improvements
Enterprise-wide transformation
Other Customer Age resources to explore:
Outside-In The Secret: www.outsideinthesecret.com
CEMMethod™: www.cemmethod.com
Certified Process Professional: www.certifiedprocessprofessional.com
Training: www.bpgroup.org/training.html