The Synergy of Motherhood and CX Leadership: Maximizing Impact in Both Roles

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Motherhood and CX Leadership Skills and Lessons Learned by Stacy Sherman Doing CX Right
Have you ever wondered how Motherhood and leadership intertwine? Do you realize the impact of Motherhood on your approach to customer experience (CX)?  It’s fascinating how the skills and lessons learned from being a mom shape our CX role while our customer-centric mindset enhances our parenting too.

With Mother’s Day approaching, I’d like us to pause and continue reflecting on the incredible roles and hats that mothers juggle. Motherhood brings so much joy and challenges and profoundly impacts us as business leaders. Simultaneously, being customer-centric leaders also equips us with skills that enhance our parenting ability.

In this article, I share my views and experiences and bring you my friends’ perspectives, who I consider wonderful Moms and authentic women leaders by every definition. Read and apply the lessons to your life to keep showing up as your best self at work, at home, and everywhere you go. We have much to learn together, including Dads, Grandparents, Aunts, and Uncles too.

How Being a Mom Influences My Leadership Approach to Customer Experience

I believe Motherhood is a gift that keeps on giving. In some ways, my Gen Z kids (now young adults) have taught me more than I may have provided to them. Motherhood is a remarkable journey that shapes and redefines our lives. It challenges us to be selfless, patient, and nurturing while empowering us to be strong, resilient, and compassionate. As a mother, I discovered that the lessons and skills acquired through this transformative experience significantly influence my leadership approach to customer experience. Understanding each individual’s unique needs and problems allows me to intentionally tailor my approach and provide support in ways that are meaningful to each person—no cookie-cutter tactics. In addition, effective leadership is about fostering a culture of care, trust, collaboration, and dedication to exceptional communication. My best tip for you is to read “The Four Agreements.” It’s a life-changing book that applies to business and personal growth, as I’ve summarized in my other article.

How Being a Customer-Centric Leader Impacts My Approach to Motherhood

Being a customer experience leader means putting customers’ needs and satisfaction at the forefront of decision-making. This mindset significantly influences my approach to Motherhood. I strive to understand and anticipate my children’s needs, creating an environment where they feel valued and unconditionally loved. Just as I aim to exceed customer expectations, I strive to exceed my children’s expectations by providing them with the devotion, guidance, and resources they need to thrive. Being customer-centric in Motherhood means actively listening to their concerns, providing constructive feedback, and continually improving my soft skills. I also believe in full transparency and keeping conversations real to build and sustain trust. Learn more about the power of Trust and how to get and keep it on my DoingCXRight Podcast with well-known authors Joe Folkman (episode 86) and Charles Green (episode 20).

Tips for Balancing Mom/Work Life

Finding a balance between being a mom and excelling in a professional career can be demanding, but it is possible with the right mindset and strategies. Here are some tips that help me navigate this delicate balance:

Prioritize and categorize action items  

To-do lists can be overbearing. I suggest dividing all the items into what is important “now” versus “soon” and “later” so you know what to tackle in a methodical order. I recommend using apps to help you stay organized. One of my favorites is Things. (I have more favorites if you want tips and tricks.) Also, spend time with supportive people, including those who can assist with childcare or household responsibilities, to free up time for completing your list.

Set boundaries

Establish clear boundaries between work and family life. Designate specific times for work and dedicate uninterrupted time to your children. Time blocking and sticking to schedules help maintain a sense of routine and order. Check out helpful tips on my Doing CX Right Podcast episode 33, featuring Marcey Rader, author of  “Work Well. Play More! Productive, Clutter-Free, Healthy Living – One Step at a Time.”

Practice self-care

Taking care of yourself physically, mentally, and emotionally is essential. Set aside time for activities that rejuvenate and recharge you. Get creative and stick with it. Remember, a happy and fulfilled mother is better equipped to be a strong leader and caregiver. You can’t give to others if you are unfulfilled.

Strive for flexibility. Ask for what you need.

Embrace the flexibility that modern work environments offer. Seek opportunities for remote work or flexible schedules that allow you to balance your mom and work responsibilities more effectively. As my mom taught me, “If you don’t ask, the answer is always no.” By the way, the Gig Economy is real and a win-win for businesses and the workforce. Take advantage of it. Read my article to learn more.

More Insights From Powerful Moms and Customer Experience Leaders

Feedback From Jeannie Walters- CEO & Chief Experience Investigator

Q: How has being a Mom influenced your leadership approach to customer experience?

A: “As a Mom, I’ve found myself aware of how often I’m mentally and emotionally checking in with my kids. Even if I don’t ask directly, I’m watching and predicting how they’ll respond to something, what they might be feeling, or what obstacles might be in their way. I think this is a key skill for any leader, and especially CX leaders. We need to keep our awareness up for so many things. I think of this when I look for signals in feedback. They don’t tell us the whole story – we have to understand the big picture and predict how the customer feels and what they’ll do next. Data and AI, and predictive analytics can certainly help, but leaders need awareness and intuition to understand and act on the big picture – just like being a Mom!

Q: How has being a Customer Experience leader impacted your approach to Motherhood?

A: “I’m not sure if this is unique to being a CX leader, but as an entrepreneur, my kids have watched me work hard, have success on some days and challenges on others. I think this is a great thing for them to see so personally. Life is not a straight line and “luck” has a way of following lots of hard work! I talk about this journey with them as they face their own challenges.”

Q: What tip do you have for balancing mom/work life for others trying to get better at it?

Bring your whole self. I’ve never shied away from talking about my role as a Mom with clients or colleagues and I discuss customer experience with the whole family! My boys are teenagers now and send me examples of great (and not so great) customer experience moments “in the wild.” It’s just part of their DNA. 🙂

Humans are complex and wonderfully nuanced. It’s best to bring all your complexity and nuance to everything you do, in my humble opinion. And balance might not be the word I use all the time. Both parenthood and customer experience are long games. That means you might be “out of balance” at some point but overall achieve a sense of balance over a span of time. It’s a constant reality and I think parents and caretakers of all kinds struggle with the daily demands. So give yourself some grace – remember it’s a long game with really amazing rewards.”

Listen to my conversation with Jeannie on Doing CX Right Podcast episode 16: Living Your CX Mission

Feedback From Annette Franz- CEO & Founder and CEO, CX Journey

Q: How has being a Mom influenced your leadership approach to Customer Experience? And how has being a Customer Experience leader impacted your approach to Motherhood?

A: I’m going to answer these together because I think they go both ways, i.e., the answer for one applies to the answer for the other. The skills and attitudes that we need as a parent often translate well to the approach we need as customer experience leaders. They include patience, problem-solving, selling, educating, communication and listening, critical thinking, persuasion, flexibility, empathy, adaptability, understanding, and more. I think we hone each of those skills in different ways as leaders and as moms.

Q: What tip do you have for balancing mom/work life for others trying to get better at it?

A:  “Hi. My name is Annette. I’m a workaholic. LOL. I’m still trying to get better at it after 30+ years in this profession and 21+ years as a mom. It takes a deliberate act to truly get that balance. 

– I block out time on my calendar for things that I know I need to do for myself, including my morning workout, taking time out of the day to read and do other things, taking the kids to school (when they were younger), kids school stuff and events, and more. 

– It takes intentional actions to leave my home office at the end of the day and put it behind me for the evening; it will all be there for me again in the morning. That was a tough mindset to cut through.

– In the last couple of years, I’ve started taking a long weekend every month and going out of town to just reset and recharge. I’ve always said to my boys, When mom’s happy, everyone is happy. It’s so true. It works.”

Listen to my conversation with Annette on Doing CX Right Podcast episode 55: Building A Customer-Centric Organization

Feedback From Sonja Mechling- CEO Kaiser & Kraft

Q: How has being a Mom influenced your leadership approach to customer experience?

A: “I’ve become much more empathetic. I try to understand what matters to my sons, and the same for customers. It’s the same.”

Q: How has being a customer-centric leader impacted your approach to Motherhood?

“I became a mother at a young age before I became a leader. As a mother, I know the importance of building trust with kids, like getting and keeping trust with customers. Both need to know that they can rely on you.”

Q: What tip do you have for balancing mom/work life for others trying to get better at it?

A:  Working Moms often feel guilty about not spending enough time with the kids and at the same time, not investing more time to work. What helps me a lot is learning that I don’t have to do it all by myself. My sons did not care too much about who drove them to the football training. Yet, they like to have me around watching the match, especially when they scored a goal.”

Conclusion:

The roles of being a mother and a leader intertwine, creating a profound synergy that shapes our approach to customer experience. Through the lens of Motherhood, we gain invaluable lessons in empathy, understanding, and nurturing that transform us into more compassionate and effective leaders.

Happy Mother’s Day To My Mom

who taught me so much about thriving in business and life. Watch my video to hear my Mom’s story and lessons learned from being one the first women Stock Options Traders on Wallstreet.

Stacy Sherman
Professional speaker, author, and customer experience practitioner. Specializes in helping brand leaders double their income from existing customers. Stacy has coached and delivered hundreds of speeches and workshops based on her Heart & Science™ model that consistently produces tangible results and brand distinction. Recognized repeatedly as a Top 30 Global Guru and a Top 25 CX Thought Leader by ICMI, Stacy is also a W3 award recipient for her DoingCX Right podcast. Her latest insights are offered through a LinkedIn Learning course, with an upcoming book on Customer Journey Management

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