My eldest son, Scout is a serious mountain biker and spends all his spare time riding various mountain biking trails around the United Kingdom and Europe. His forte is the steep downhill style of riding rather than the easy going cross-country tracks.
A pivotal service crucial to all downhill riders is the’ uplift’ where a purpose-built trailer or chair lift carries their bikes to the top of the hill or mountain from where they begin their downhill run.
I began to see a similarity between this sport and how organisations should achieve that’ wow’ in the way they treat their customer experience. Any training can often feel like an uplift, a huge uphill climb to reach the top. When you walk this path to get to the top along any step of the way it becomes very easy to falter. Often when implementing culture change it can feel like you are pushing a rock uphill. If you stop and take your eye off the track for even a minute, you can lose your foot fall risking all the effort your organisation has tirelessly put in place.
What we can all do in our organisations is to view our training at every stage of this trail. Otherwise as with a gravitational pull, a giant slalom or mountain bike trail we will be back at the bottom before we have accomplished what we have set to roll out to both our internal staff and customers alike.
Continuing with this metaphor a while longer, we must always implement change at the top of the mountain not the bottom. Training should start with management understanding the principles of customer experience. It is only then key messages can be cascaded down from the top to the bottom of this organisational trail.
Just like my son the mountain biker, if you start with a short run first to get the experience and flavour of what you want to achieve, you can quickly grow and increase momentum. Just like those mountain bikers gathering pace through the paths and trails, only then will you find no amount of resistance can stop the results of your endeavours i.e. your training taking over the organisation at break neck speed.
With a strong infrastructure in place your training will amplify your insight for the customer experience. In many organisations, too often though this infrastructure has never really been in place. You may have paid a small investment for your training needs, but only enough to patch up the problem like a sticking plaster on a mountain biker’s knee. What you need is a platform, a base that will make turn your insight for a great customer service into a crucially important factor in your whole team.
You must work on this platform everyday regardless of facing any resistance. As the platform gets bigger and stronger you will get the opportunity to launch the new concepts and ideas of this training a little farther ‘uphill’ towards your ultimate goal. To be the best, the ‘pro’
The uncertainty of the need for such a strong commitment to deliver a great customer experience is a key stumbling block in many organisations. It is crucial to realise that to be the best and to have a champion customer experience is about the ‘uplift’, the effort in pushing to the top.
Delivering a great customer experience demands that the organisation takes its own journey, following a strategic trail that will lead it to its final destination, its aim or purpose. Along the route there will be many cracks, crevices, loose rocks, to snag the unwary traveller. Sharing an inspirational vision from the top, and cascading the vision down throughout the organisation is critical to delivering great customer service. Overcoming all these barriers along the way is essential.
Are you overcoming these barriers in your organisation?