Breaking Out of Your Customer Experience Comfort Zone


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Last week was the 8th grade formal for my daughter Caroline’s class. Leading up to the dance, her friends informed her that a certain boy was planning to invite her. You know how these types of things can play out in Middle School. Anyway, with just a week to go before the big event and growing restless, Caroline, who tends to be a bit shy, decided to break out of her own comfort zone and ask the boy to the dance using a creative poster board she planned to present to him on the school bus. He accepted and they and their friends had a wonderful time. Caroline’s bold actions serve as a reminder about how each of us need to challenge ourselves from time to time and take chances that can stretch us personally or professionally. This includes trying out new approaches that could improve the customer experience.

For instance, say your organization relies on customer surveys and other conventional forms of customer feedback but has considered exploring other sources of customer feedback such as recorded calls in the contact center that can be analyzed to identify trends or sources of customer frustration that can be acted on.

Meanwhile, companies that are intrigued by the potential value of applying customer journey mapping but haven’t yet taken the plunge can start small by using Post-it Notes to plot out different stages of the customer journey. Doing so can help companies to better understand the paths that customers take to purchase or to receive support and to identify any friction they may face in their experiences that can be removed.

Of course, there are other tactics that customer experience professionals can explore. This can include challenging organizational assumptions about customer experience such as conjecture about the touchpoints customers are using based on outdated information. Or confronting functional or business leaders regarding organizational silos that are preventing customer-facing associates and supervisors from gaining a comprehensive view of customers.

New tools and techniques are constantly emerging that offer companies new ways to enhance and even differentiate the customer experience. Exploring new approaches to enhance the customer experience doesn’t always require a major financial commitment when a small pilot project can be used to test a hypothesis. But it does involve a willingness to try new things.

Tom Hoffman
Tom Hoffman is Executive Business Editor at 1to1 Media in Stamford, Connecticut where he's responsible for overseeing the organization's custom content operations. As part of his role, Tom works directly with companies to develop articles, executive Q&As, case studies and webinars.


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