So, to my BFO or Blinding Flash of the Obvious – it’s about the fundamental essence of the Customer Experience: that elusive concept, responsible for more than its fair share of vacant expressions on C-Suite-level faces, and frustrated middle managers with the words “Visitor/Customer Experience” in their job title.
Mission is about “you”.
Vision is about “them”.
To succeed, you need both – and you mustn’t get them mixed up!
To appreciate how vital culture is in determining the success of any business, ask yourself whether anyone who had (a) read and (b) believed “United’s Customer Commitment” could possibly have behaved the way United’s employees behaved towards one of its customers this week.
The lessons, however, are vital for every business in 2017.
This article makes stimulating reading if you have a customer-facing business (you don’t…?) – especially if you’re interested in finding ways to attract more customers, and generate more revenue (you aren’t…?).
Whatever your business, take time out to reflect on the opportunities you aren’t exploring:
“[Sir Ken Morrison] showed us all the importance of aiming high but never forgetting the practicalities of life and the humanity of those we deal with.”
These words encapsulate the essence of great retailing, great business and great Customer Experience. Ken Morrison was an innovator – for example he built Morrisons on a model of vertical integration, directly controlling many of its food suppliers, and developed the Market Street concept of retail theatre combined with expertise directly available to the consumer.
My first newsletter of 2017 has a new look and a new focus. It’s inspired by a quotation given to me by my friend, futurist Nick Price:
“Customer Experience isn’t simply the quality & arrangement of assets. It’s their orchestration.”
So this month’s newsletter reflects three aspects of my mission:
“I help organisations orchestrate their assets so that everyone and everything plays to their full potential.”
In the House of Commons, following Prime Minister Theresa May’s most detailed speech to date on her government’s Brexit strategy, Conservative MP Nicholas Soames (despite being a strong Remain supporter) says it is time to accept the verdict of the referendum and “get on with it”.
He quotes his grandfather Winston Churchill: “If there is a bear in your bedroom it is not a matter for speculation.”
The simple wisdom of this statement – as well as the refreshing humour – resonates through time.
If you have a bear (an unwanted, unwelcome, and potentially dangerous intruder) in your bedroom (or boardroom), sometimes it just takes an outside observer to say “I see you have a bear in there. What are you going to do about it?”
In a world where the unthinkable and the impossible are rapidly becoming the reality, the challenges for organisations and businesses are also the opportunities. The key is to understand the trends, stay focused on vision, mission and key success drivers, and to implement flexible strategies based on what will happen, what could happen, and above all, on what you want to happen.
This is the third and last of my short series of posts, distilling insights from the conference I attended on On Wednesday 15th June : The Future of the Experience Economy, organised by Eventbrite.
Well it’s been quite a few days here in the UK: there are more questions than answers, and uncertainty – that enemy of business confidence and growth – seems set to be with us for at least the next few months, if not years.
So what should business do for the best?
I had two experiences last week that showed, simply yet dramatically, where business’ focus should be over the foreseeable future: on engaging and empowering people to deliver memorable Customer Experiences.