Do you have the Right Obsessions?

In one minute you have the distilled strategy from the man who has created an empire with a very simple philosophy.

The Richest Guy on the Planet tells us how to do it

We live, eat and breathe this stuff. Come and learn how to do it for you and your organization. We can’t promise you will become another Jeff but you will change to healthier Obsessions!

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The Reason Why You Will Never Become Customer Centric

Business failures are all around us, nothing new there then. If we go back a decade or so we saw the demise of Nokia, we’ve seen companies like Blockbuster crash and burn, and other companies in the High Street whether it’s in Europe or in the US disappear and never to be seen again.

Why is this so? When you look at the investment those companies were making there was no lack of intent to spend in understanding how the customer was changing. In the year that Apple introduced the iPhone Nokia was investing heavily in voice of the customer (VOC) surveys, customer satisfaction and NPS.

But they missed the point. Progressive Outside-In companies (think Amazon, Zara, Zappos, Emirates) are not about retrospective subjective analysis of perceived performance.

Also it isn’t about overlaying processes with a new language when fundamentally the very systems and processes were never designed to deliver customer experiences. Those now creaking processes were designed with a factory mindset centred around production line thinking, throughput and waste. Hence the challenge for many is more fundamental as it’s not about rejigging what you’re doing – it is about a complete rethink to move outside in the way that you do business.

Remarkably even in the third decade of the 21st century there are still those companies that think they can just tweak and change the language inside their organisations.

As if doing better advertising and marketing to customers and talking about ‘new’ services on top of their existing infrastructures and IT systems hacks it. The actual reality is somewhat different.

Senior Executive commentary

Top teams and senior executives need to grasp this challenge. Roland Naidoo, a senior executive at African based entertainments company Multichoice puts the choice starkly:

“Would you measure how fast a 1600cc car performed around an F1 circuit. No? Then why would you try to measure customer experience AND improve it on processes and products there were never designed with experience in mind. Go on enter your 1600 into the next F1. Wonder how it would perform?”

Roland Naidoo, Multichoice Africa

Lipstick on a Pig? Surely not…

Those companies who understand that ‘outside-in’ thinking calls for a complete realignment and new appraisal of what the customer experience consists of.

Rather than, to coin a phrase, putting lipstick on a pig. You have actually got to think about what is it you’re trying to achieve; what does success look like for our customer? And then align across all functions, all systems and ways of working towards successful customer outcomes. Disney refers to this alignment as getting everybody to understand where true north is and not to do anything unless it contributes to that alignment. Imagine all new initiatives being assessed by a similar approach?

Are you working in a Rubik cube?

Another aspect which comes into play is this idea that traditional measurement* is predominantly subjective and retrospective. Progressive outside in companies are not reactive – they get scientific about the customer experience.

Measuring each interaction as it happens and if necessary course-correcting in real-time. They develop the ability to see around corners to understand what’s coming next. They don’t have to wait for analysis 2 weeks after an event to decide that some remedial action is required.

This knowledge in the instance of what is happening requires us to create this idea of ‘action in the moment’ for all our employees. Zappos**, for instance, give their employees the tools and the capability to be able to make decisions in the moment (without the need to escalate to supervisors).

Industrial Age thinking will kill you

And there is another challenge companies face if they are still organised around functional specialist silos. If you’ve recruited low paid people and given them a script to follow, manage them to average handle times and throughputs you’re going to fail.

Once more the outside-in companies have an edge here as they understand that to give your most precious resource (the customer) to the employees then you need the right people in the right place able to do the right things at that moment of truth.

So what is your organization doing? is it trying to put lipstick on the pig? is it just trying to overlay the existing process is an infrastructure with this new customer-centric way of talking and doing?

It is very simple. You need to get down to brass tacks of rethinking what customer experience is all about its implication for the organisation going forward. Those organisations that are taking this outside-in approach find the world becomes simpler, faster and much more directly oriented towards delivering successful customer outcomes and winning for the bottom line.


* Why does traditional measurement fail?
from the CX Rockstar aka James Dodkins at https://www.linkedin.com/feed/update/urn:li:activity:6566333517070954496/

** Zappos – Wow customer service: https://www.forbes.com/sites/micahsolomon/2018/09/15/the-secret-of-wow-customer-service-is-breathing-space-just-ask-zappos/#7da91ff01b2c

Roland Naidoo can be reached at:
https://www.linkedin.com/in/roland-d-naidoo-b403a029/

Join our upcoming Coaching and Accreditation sessions online, LIVE & Interactive

Certified Process Professional
Master (CPPM)
10th Aug4 days @ 5 hours per day
Accredited CX Master
(ACXM)
18th Aug4 days @ 5 hours per day
Accredited CX Mentor
(ACX-Mentor)
1st Sep4 weeks @ 3 hours per week
Accredited CX Champion
(ACXC)
8th Sep3 days @ 5 hours per day
Certified Process Professional
Champion (CPPC)
22nd Sep3 days @ 5 hours per day
Certified Outside In Master
(COIM)
8th Sep7 weeks @ 3 hours per week

Call Centre Metrics are the Reason Customers Are so Unhappy (part 1)

Here are seven classic examples from a recent blog of someone selling Call Centre Services. No, I really am to polite to call them out. I thought I had travelled back in time 50 years, but I am appalled there are people still doing this?!

This hurts my Head

Why are these so Wrong?
Answers on a post card but Part Two Next week will provide more insight.

And then in Part Three we will explore the alternatives…

Call Centre Measures that cripple Your Customer Experiences
(the seven deadly sins)

Service Level – “The service level is the percentage of calls responded in a particular time limit. It assesses the skills of agents to deliver the service as per the Service Level Agreement (SLA) given to the clients.”…. It is a significant way to judge the performance of a call center.

Average Call Handle Time –  “This KPI measures time an agent needs on a call.”

Average Queue Time – “To assure that the wait time of callers rests in the fair scope and the patience of customers should not be tested”

Call Abandonment – “It is a usual experience in the call center that clients disconnect the calls before even connecting to an agent.”

First Call Resolution – “The client is frequently in a rush. Thus, he requires that the concern of the caller must be fixed in the first call”

Occupancy Rate – “It is completely about the ability to complete the work within minimum time.”

Agent Turnover Rate – “It measures the rate of agents who switch the job. It not only causes customer service conflicts and delays as well as it also creates many issues.”

A person once said this to me… “If you pay people for doing dumb stuff they will get really smart at it”

A Very Wise Women

In Part Two we will review why Call Centre thinking is so BAD and should be BANNED.


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Uncovering the Secrets of the Top Influencers

Who are the best and what are their secrets?

I revisited my lists of sources, contacts and influencers, brought them up to date (the last two years or so) and collated the best across the domains I operate in. I included the recent Award winners acknowledged for their contributions to business. The result you can access below which contains the people, their LinkedIn connections, their best videos and in some cases additional resources.

My work takes me all over the planet and I get to meet some awesome people who are generous with their time and ideas. I then test, optimise and codify these great ideas into techniques and approaches we can all access.

Dare! Amazon Number 1 Best Seller (2020)

I was relating this approach at a keynote in a conference in Romania recently following the publication of our new Amazon best selling book Dare!

The keynote went well (see the extract version below) and everyone adjourned to the bar to relax and network.

At that drinks reception several people wanted to know my sources of inspiration, so naturally, we started trading names, some well known and some not yet so. As I was doing this it struck me this was one of the most commonly asked questions whether I am talking or working with some of the leading companies on the planet. So an idea was born…

Steve’s keynote in Bucharest in February 2020

Who are the best and what are their secrets?

I revisited my lists of sources, contacts and influencers, brought them up to date (the last two years or so) and collated the best across the domains I operate in. I included the recent Award winners acknowledged for their contributions to business. The result you can access below which contains the people, their LinkedIn connections, their best videos and in some cases additional resources.

So the next time someone asks me a question about influencers I am going to point them here!

All the Best, Keep safe and well,
Steve

Customer Experience, Customer Service, Leadership and Operational Excellence

Click the image to access videos, books and other resources!

Innovators Innovating Innovation

Limiting mindsets. A scourge of modern times and a limit on human performance keeping us in thought straight jackets.

Dare! Amazon Number 1 Best Seller (2020)

If you want something new you have to stop doing something old

Peter Drucker

So what are modern day thinkers and Innovators doing to break out of preconditioned constraining beliefs? Well if you google ‘innovation’ you get 1,650,000,000 (one billion, six hundred and fifty million) responses which would be a bit of light reading for the weekend 😉

So I tried another tack and thought about the best online videos and books featuring innovation, and yes there is a fast track way to watch and hear the thoughts of today’s greats, in action doing their innovative things.

Who are the best and what are their secrets?

I revisited my lists of sources, contacts and influencers, brought them up to date (the last two years or so) and collated the best across the domains I operate in. I included the recent Award winners acknowledged for their contributions to business. The result you can access below which contains the people, their LinkedIn connections, their best videos and in some cases additional resources.

So the next time someone asks me a question about TipTop Innovators and influencers I am going to point them here!

All the Best, Keep safe and well,
Steve

Innovation Experts 2020

Click the image to access videos, books and other resources!


https://tiptopinfluencers.com/tiptopinnovators

What is the key that picks any lock?

Patterns. They are Fascinating. If you can understand them, and model them then you can deliver amazing results.

When I was a young kid I loved the weather forecast on TV. All those swirly lines (isobars as I was later to discover) and fronts.

Then I discovered astronomy, got a telescope, and stared in awe at the planets, stars and galaxies. It was mind blowing how they all worked together through invisible forces.

Then a good childhood friend of mine introduced me to chess. Amazing, wow! I studied openings and endings and everything in between. The great world champions, Tal, Botvinnik, Fisher and Magnus Carlsen.

Then came meditation and brainwaves. I dabbled with gamma, alpha, beta, theta and Delta and watched them represent our brain processes. I love neuro-science. Then I discovered love, the crazy emotional ups and downs, the exhilaration, heartache and the deep deep introspection.

So what do all these things have in common? Yes, patterns! If you can ‘see’ the pattern, figure them out then you too can become good with them.

Something occurred to me – were our lives governed by patterns? That ‘aha’ moment took me on a career path initially in Industrial Engineering, then Process Reengineering, then Systems Engineering, Enterprise Architecture, and even into Neuro-Linguistic Programming, Medical Hypnotherapy and Reiki.

My life can be summed as one of trying to understand patterns of energy, how they relate and how they work.

Patterns have worked for me, whether in my business life, personal (can anyone truly understand our partners and children?!), hobbies, music and so much more. By studying the greats, people, organisations, mentors and leaders you can model their patterns, codify them and share with others.

That is what, with some great friends and colleagues, we have done in and around Experience Management, whether that is writing bestselling books, developing business transformation methods, launching new software tools or simply living better lives. Working with the worlds best companies we picked apart the complexity and saw the simple beauty of approaches that work outstandingly every time without exception.

And now we have brought them online. We have unpacked the wisdom, applied pragmatic techniques and repackaged the patterns into workable replicable behaviours that we can all learn and make our own.

Please join us on this incredible journey in the next few weeks.

As a primer this course is running now – Outside-In Vision.

6 weeks at 3 hours per week to learn and practice the patterns that win the game for the worlds leading companies.

Join us live or watch the recorded interactive hands-on sessions at a time to suit you. You may just have discovered the key that picks any lock.

https://oi2020vision.eventbrite.com

What are Moments of Truth?

Since the days of Richard Normann, the guy who invented the business term ‘Moments of Truth’ and Jan Carlzon’s book in 1989, the business world has interpreted Moments of Truth in several ways.

Jan Carlzon’s 1989 book ‘Moments of Truth’ socialised Richard Normann’s concept.

I have also published many articles and conference keynotes (see the MOT primer below) reviewing the continued evolution of this interesting concept.

Definitions

My interpretation and application of Moments of Truth revolve around three themes:

a. What is a Moment of Truth?

A Moment of Truth is any interaction with the customer within the Customer Experience – first discussed in my 1994 book ‘Business Process Reengineering – A Senior Executives Guide’

b. Moments of Truth are the cause of all work.

First discussed back in 2009 the idea that all work an organization undertakes is, at a fundamental level, caused by Moments of Truth. In principle, everything a company does can and should be linked to a Moment of Truth.

We harness and make real this design principle using the Customer Performance Landscape. Connecting the dots from everything to the Cause of all work – The Moment of Truth.

c. The Moment of Truth for any organization is…

At a practical level organizations need to chunk down their approach to fixing and innovating Moments of Truth. CEO of Denver based ‘The Experience Manager’

Doug Bell, CEO The Experience Manager

Doug Bell says “A Moment of Truth is an interaction that contributes to the production of a successful customer outcome. It either does or it doesn’t. To ensure outside in, you need to look through the Successful Customer Outcome lens.”

Managing Moments of Truth

Enlightened ‘Outside-In’ organizations actively embrace Moment of Truth Management as an essential strategic and operational necessity to deliver engineered Customer Experiences. How so?

a. Designing for Moments of Truth – The Design-Implementation Gap

Early efforts were geared around designing optimal Moments of Truth, however, simply mapping customer journeys has never been enough. It is one thing agreeing on what a future state customer journey should be, it is entirely another implementing it. This Design-Implementation gap is precisely what kills the majority of Customer Experience initiatives.

b. Implementing optimized Moments of Truth

Successful deployment of innovated Moments of Truth is key to delivering optimal Customer Experiences. The most practical immediate results are focused on rapid roll out across a key experience and using the success of that to validate rolling out smoothly across the organization. Establishing ownership, accountability, metrics, controls and improvement paths are part of this discipline.

c. Operationalizing Moments of Truth

Once Moments of Truth have been designed, innovated and implemented into recrafted customer experiences they need to be actively managed ‘in the moment’ and shared. Every Moment of Truth should feed to a corporate dashboard, with real-time data showing the performance of that MOT and its associated experiences. If things go wrong the owner should be able to ‘course correct’ and real-time monitor the customer experience delivery.

Imagine a world without customer satisfaction surveys, no need for Net Promoter Scores, no focus groups, and no mystery shopping because you will know how 100% of interactions are performing 100% of the time.

Control and Action combined

The C suite and leaders will now have a clear line of sight into every corner of the organization and across the enterprise landscape REAL TIME. One version of the data truth (and not all those departmental/divisional versions of reality).

The need for retrospective action evaporates. Immediate and laser-focused control can be maintained delivering simultaneously enhanced service, lower costs, higher revenues, improved compliance and uber motivated employees.

What’s next?

In my next piece I will demonstrate how this can be done immediately. If you can’t wait for that ping me and let’s talk the how, now



MOT primer…

Steve Towers
https://www.linkedin.com/in/stevetowers/

Richard Normann – creator of the Moments of Truth concept:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Normann

Jan Carlzon – author ‘Moments of Truth’
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jan_Carlzon

Doug Bell – CEO of The Experience Manager
‘The Moments of Truth Management System’
https://www.linkedin.com/in/dhbell/

Moments of Truth 2009
https://www.slideshare.net/stowers/moments-of-truth-perth2009

That Kodak Moment of Truth
https://www.processexcellencenetwork.com/innovation/columns/4-lessons-from-the-kodak-moment-of-truth

** Just published **
Mitch Belsley 2019 – Get Scientific about Managing Moments of Truth
http://customerthink.com/get-scientific-about-managing-moments-of-truth/

Your definition of CX is wrong…

And the controversy continues… is this the one that will really upset some people?

To learn how others shape their Total Experience on behalf of customers, employees, stakeholders and shareholders join us at one of these venues soon…

Denver: https://denversummermasters.eventbrite.com

London: https://londonacxm2019.eventbrite.com

Johannesburg: https://joburg_44th_cppm.eventbrite.com

Dubai: https://dubaiacxm_2019.eventbrite.com

Holiday Reading – Customer Experience & Process Transformation

Just updated the Articles page which connects to my LinkedIn profile.

It has been a busy 2018 so far – you can access all the new articles (15 in 6 months) covering all the latest themes in and around Customer Experience Process Transformation.

Click on the image to access the individual pieces, however, to whet your appetite three of the most popular articles:

The Customer Experience Management Office – The What and the Why

Three fundamental Building Blocks for CX

The Employee Experience

Everyone Loves Great CX

Additionally, the new book is in draft, “Everyone Loves CX”, and will be published early next year. If you want to join the list and get access to the preview, samples and associated materials register here.

With a dozen new case studies and terrific insights from global leaders, I examine some of the next practices and how you can deploy them with immediate effect in your own world.

 

Rockstar CX

If videos are your thing then do hook up with James Dodkins and the Rockstar CX initiative.

He interviews live on Facebook the leading CX Professionals from across the globe at:
https://www.facebook.com/pg/JDODKINS/videos/

OK, I am off to the beach now. Get that G&T ready, please!

How popular is Customer Experience #CX thinking and practice?

An important question if you are tasked with making Customer Experience  #CX work for your organization.

Let’s contrast and compare current trends!

Twitter – Trends emerge when you monitor hashtags, and the shorthand for Customer Experience #cx is a good starting point. When you contrast #CX with other popular management approaches such as #lean #lss and #bpm is interesting:

hashtags data by hashtagify.me

That puts #CX in the ascendency.

What about #CX with other associated interests?

hashtags data by hashtagify.me

 

Top of the Tweeters for Customer Experience is Colin Shaw @ColinShaw_CX with over 43,400 #CX tweets.
If you follow him you will never be short of material related to Customer Experience as he vacuums the web for interesting articles, in addition to his own contributions.

Jump to the latest on Twitter with https://twitter.com/hashtag/cx

What about LinkedIn?

A recent introduction of hashtags to this platform provides a good insight…
Searching LinkedIn’s Sales Navigator platform with #CX reveals 83.4K members using Customer Experience as part of their profiles (that is 10 times greater than those using #lean).

The demographics
of the 83.4K show a predominance of folks in the US.

  1. United States (25,513)
  2. United Kingdom (5,733)
  3. Australia (5,200)
  4. India (4,622)
  5. Brazil (3,527)
  6. Sydney, Australia (2,639)

If you slice the data into companies expressing their interest in #CX we can see Oracle way ahead.

  1. Oracle (3,783)
  2. Amazon (534)
  3. IBM (437)
  4. Microsoft (433)

Does this reflect a reframing of their products to emphasize Customer Experience as a top table strategic interest?

And What about Google?

Searching #CX reveals 317,000,000 results in 0.8 seconds. That is one helluva a lot of reading. Drilling down with Google Trends, and using the same comparisons with Lean, LSS, BPM and CX produces an interesting contrast with Twitters results. Here we do see a decline in interest with Lean however the interest is still significantly ahead of CX.

We will revist this analysis periodically. Now go away and start researching all those interesting sources!