Why does the employee experience matter just as much, if not more than the customer experience? Stacy Sherman joined Gabe Larsen and Vikas Bhambri from Kustomer to discuss why this is true and other incredibly insightful information. (You can hear our discussions on the Customer Service Secrets Podcast below.)
Establishing a Customer Obsessed C-Suite
Many CX leaders are finding it difficult to help their teams completely deliver the best overall experience for their modern customers. Stacy Sherman attributes this to people at the top of a company not being completely customer-centric. When people at the top of a company, such as executives or others within the c-suite, are customer-minded, the brand as a whole is more likely to find success.
A great way to get executive involvement is to have them participate in CX activities to get to know the processes and the employees. This method creates a sense of empathy on a multi-departmental level that ultimately implements a customer mindset from the bottom up. Those are the leaders that also drive that engagement all the way through the organization. So it’s a bottom-up and a top-down where everybody’s walking that talk.
Engaging with the frontline agents who handle all things customer-related is one of the best ways for a brand to become more holistically customer-centric. This engagement not only centers the brand but also encourages those frontline agents to go above and beyond in their roles, especially as they feel that they are valued and an integral part of the brand.
Mental Safety and Cultivating Friendships in the Workplace
A large contributor to customer satisfaction is that of employee happiness. The experts discuss Gallup’s Q12 Employee Engagement Survey questions that help to determine overall employee satisfaction within their company. Of these 12 questions, one of the most notable asks if the employee has a best friend in the workplace, as this is helpful for improved satisfaction scores.
On this note, Stacy hosts a book club at her workplace and believes it has become so successful because of the friendliness between coworkers, which opens a space for nonjudgemental conversation.
During the podcast, Stacy also explains that customer service and customer experience are very different in a “holistic view’ and that a workplace culture trickles down to customer engagement. When employees are happy, the customers are happy because the agents perform better, are more attentive, and more willing to go the extra mile.
Creating a space where employees feel they have friends and can be somewhat vulnerable with one another is accomplished through a safety mentality. “Mental safety to express your views. Safety that you won’t be judged. And that’s something that people don’t first and foremost think about.”
Consistency Gives Companies an Edge
Companies with an edge on the competition are more than likely to be united with a common goal across all functions and branches. According to Vikas, “Customer obsession is something that needs to be cultivated across the board.” All departments should be inspired to keep the customer in mind and to do so, I suggest having a weekly meeting with leaders from all departments to contribute and create a cross-functional customer journey map so that all are on the same page.
When leaders work together in a customer-obsessed manner, they are enhancing the overall experience by curating each business element to their experience. Leaders would do well to place themselves in the shoes of their customers and their employees to get a look at how their business affects their lives. Doing so strengthens the bond between employee, customer, and leader and ultimately drives retention across CX. Stacy urges leaders to empathize, listen to and adapt with their employees, especially as they embrace a new normal and return to work.
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Learn more from Stacy Sherman at DoingCXRight.com