Before we can steer the ship, we must first build the boat!
Last month, we worked on coming to terms with how clients truly perceive us, and we’ve got a pretty good understanding of what remarkable experiences are. The next question we need to ask ourselves is “What’s next?”.
Before we can steer the ship, we must first build the boat! This is where your Customer Experience Strategy comes into play. Call me a CX nerd, but I absolutely LOVE this part of the process as it’s where creative freedom is your friend and you start to bring CX to life.
The CXPA defines the CX strategy as “… our intended Customer Experience, how it links to our overall organisation strategy and objectives and how it aligns to our brand values and attributes.” This will build the foundations of your approach to customer experience and give your team direction.
We need to create our vision, values, and branding, centred around CX and aligned with the business direction. This will build a foundation for realistic expectations of experience for your staff and your clients.
For some inspiration, The Ritz Carlton Hotel penned their CX vision as “We are ladies and gentlemen serving ladies and gentlemen”. When I read this, I would assume that as a customer of the Ritz I could expect an experience of a glamorous standard, to be wined and dined. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if Hector Elizondo from ‘Pretty Woman’ was there, ready to teach me which fork goes first. I drew this conclusion from one sentence, powerful right?
Once you have your vision, you can build on this with values. These are generally short points outlining the core values that support your vision and sets a standard of what you might look for in potential applicants that join your team in future. For example, if I were tasked with writing the values that underpin The Ritz Carlton’s vision it would comprise of words such as:
Now that you have your vision and values, we need to consider what implicit and explicit promises your business is making to the wider audience. Below are some questions to ask internally and externally – Remember, we can never assume we know the answer ourselves!
- What are our clients’ expectations of the experience we should be providing, based on the impression our brand portrays?
- What specific promises are we making?
- Are our clients’ expectations of CX, and the promises we make around CX, align with our CX and business strategy?
- Are they realistic expectations?
- How can we make sure we get this right from the very beginning of a client’s journey?
Now you are armed with this information, the boat won’t build itself! Block out some time to meet with your team and brainstorm how you could approach this.