As per the adage, we all have a rider and elephant inside us. We are all motivated by (rider mindset) rational and emotional (elephant in the room) factors.
If you are a customer experience leader, that duality is important to understand. To effect change, you need to outline a rational path to a desired outcome, and spur people’s emotions to fuel the journey to that outcome.
Making Meaning Out of Customer Centricity
In customer experience strategy, we can get mired in the practical elements of our business:
- Who will take responsibility?
- What are the metrics we are watching?
- When do we need to see progress?
- Where is the coffee?
- How is there no coffee?
But practical and rational motivations can only keep people motivated for so long. And those motivations only satisfy a small part of who we are.
To create lasting motivation, try asking something different:
Asking “Why?” more often in your customer experience strategy can help you develop empathy for every party involved. For example, you might ask:
- Why isn’t this connecting with them?
- Why should they care?
- Why are we working so hard for this?
- Why am I so angry we are out of coffee?
Asking “Why?” can help you develop a keener sense of emotional intelligence. And finding the right answers can help you better explain goals, plan work, and measure change.
Trust in the Journey to Customer Centricity
Emotional intelligence is a powerful leadership tool. But it’s much more powerful if you use it honorably. The last thing you want to do is develop trust and then break it. You don’t want to engage the emotional elephant only to enrage it.
When a customer or employee offers constructive feedback or taps into their emotional core, they are opening their heart. And your ability to honor their risk will dictate whether they continue to open up to you.
Customer experience leadership is a complex challenge, but it centers on a simple premise: you must deliver on the promises you make as a company.
But if you are like us, you understand that. You know that the journey is worth the effort—rationally and emotionally—for companies and their customers.
Which begs the question: If you know your why, why doesn’t everyone else?
Stay tuned for the next article in the series…