We should talk about moments that shatter rather than the moments that matter – Interview with Michael G. Bartlett


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Today’s interview is with Michael G. Bartlett who is the Director of Experience Innovation at JMARK, an I.T. support and I.T. services company, Founder of the CCXP Exam Simulator and the author of a new book called: The Dark Side of CX: The costly patterns that turn loyal customers into brand haters. Michael joins me today to talk why we should talk about moments that shatter rather than the moments that matter, the dark patterns that reside in CX, priyomes and what CX practitioners and leaders should be doing to improve their service and experience.

This interview follows on from my recent interview – The future of personalization and loyalty is dynamic – Interview with Christian Selchau-Hansen of Formation.ai – and is number 419 in the series of interviews with authors and business leaders that are doing great things, providing valuable insights, helping businesses innovate and delivering great service and experience to both their customers and their employees.

Here are the highlights of my chat with Michael:

  • What we should be doing is looking to get rid of all of the bad parts of customer journeys before we even start thinking about trying to make wonderful moments or moments that matter.
  • The book is inspired by patterns and, particularly, patterns that are seen in Chess.
  • Patterns in chess are called priyomes – they are patterns of moves that have associated manoeuvre as well.
  • Customer experience is a complex field but it is not complicated.
  • Bad experiences tend to have one of two components: goal friction and social friction.
    • Goal friction is to do with something that keeps getting in the way of the goal, slowing you down, making it more difficult, putting obstacles in the way, hiding from you so you can’t find the contact us for and all that kind of stuff.
    • Social friction is to do with when you want to accomplish a task and you do so but you’re still not happy because something went wrong like person talked down to you or they made a snide remark, for example.
  • I see the dark CX patterns as not being as deliberately manipulative like the ones that you see in the digital space. They can about because the business just didn’t design the experience or the organisation has a lot of organisational debt.
  • For the most part, people just haven’t really taken the time to to think through their experiences or they haven’t proactively audited their experiences.
  • Systems thinking has this model called the iceberg model that can help identify and understand these problems.
  • Patterns tend to have a tension between wanting to stand out and elevate our status and wanting to fit in with the group and be safe with belonging.
  • Another tension that exists is between the desire to want to explore our environment and feeling safe, so we tend not to want to explore until we feel safe.
  • The purest form of goal friction is the pattern called the Block, where basically you’re trying to get something accomplished, and the business flat out just says no, we’re not going to work with you.
  • Other patterns include Policy over people, Without a paddle and Hide and seek.
  • Michael identifies and describes 18 different patterns in the book. He also goes on to describe how people can identify them and what people can do about them.
  • All proceeds for the book go to local dog charities that are dealing with pulling dogs out of bad situations and getting them re-homed.
  • Broadly there seems to be a lot of action on both the accelerator and the brake pedal in terms of making progress in the CX space.
  • Michael’s best advice: Listen to the customer and then act and change what needs to be changed.
  • Check out a new book that is coming out soon called What Customers Hate by Nicholas Webb .
  • Check out this podcast mentioned in the interview: Find and fix customer problems by hiring a Customer Advocacy Manager – Interview with Carey Smith and Dave Waltz of Big Ass Fans.
  • Key question to ask customers: Is there anything that we do, however small or slight, that annoys or irritates you?
  • Michael’s Punk CX word: Question everything.
  • Michael’s Punk XL brand: I don’t think any company is an eXperience Leader because every time I find a company that I think, Oh my God, they did such a good job there they always do something that lets them down.

About Michael

Michael G BartlettMichael is a self-described Philanthropreneur – an entrepreneur driven to make a difference in the world. He is a huge advocate for animal welfare and his training materials have raised thousands of dollars that have gone to help rescues, shelters and transport.

He is the author of CCXP Exam Preparation – a pocket guide to the CCXP Exam, of which all profits are donated to charity. Since 2017, Michael has helped over 1000 students prepare for the certification. His approach is one of simplicity and directness. Michael does not believe that any book should come in at a few hundred pages if the content can be expressed in much less.

In addition to his charitable work, his passions include: Customer Experience Management, Artificial Intelligence and Chess.

When he is not doing charitable works Michael is the Director of Experience Innovation at JMARK, an I.T. support and I.T. services company based in Missouri in the United States.

He lives in Missouri with his wife and three dogs.

Grab a copy of Michael’s new book here and feel free to connect with him on LinkedIn here.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Adrian Swinscoe
Adrian Swinscoe brings over 25 years experience to focusing on helping companies large and small develop and implement customer focused, sustainable growth strategies.


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