“We break china for our clients”
This is an expression I heard from the CEO of a private bank I was developing a new rewards programme with. I am not quite sure exactly what it means, but I got the sentiment immediately. It convinced me the CEO cared about his clients above anything else. It also set a standard by which the rewards programme and any other customer programme had to live up to. This was over ten years ago so there was no supporting VoC, no customer charter and no continuous improvement programme in place. But it served them well then, as it does today, to prioritise actions which delivered more for their customers.
This commitment, in part, inspired me to focus on Customer Experience. It led me to find the correlation between experience and profitability. Which led to the creation of Lexden as a Customer Experience and Value Proposition Consultancy. I have a lot to thank that CEO for.
It highlights the impact having an authentic CEO onside has when it comes to driving customer strategies through the business. We’ve flagged this support as a key contributor in customer experience programmes ever since.
This CEO clearly got it. In fact 80% of CEO’s believe they get it according to Bain & Company.
Steve Cannon, Mercedes Benz CEO has described Customer Experience as the new marketing. He goes as far to say, “Operational excellence is the ticket for entry. We need to eliminate the word satisfied from our vocabulary. Satisfied for me is vanilla. We need to delight. We need to amaze. We need to provide extraordinary.”
Whilst some CEO’s have committed and are driving customer experience through as a new business model, consumers of many brands have yet to reap the benefits. In fact, the same research from Bain & Co identified only 8% of consumers agree the CEO’s do get it.
And some CEO’s seem to believe they can flick CX on (and no doubt off) like a switch. I heard this perception reportedly shared by a CEO of a low-cost airline who stated, ‘They <customers> will walk across glass to get to our planes if the price is cheap enough’. Needless to say that whilst a CEO with this approach to business might momentarily commit to CX because of the profit potential, a less sustainable ‘squeeze more and give back less’ strategy will turn their head too.
If you want to know if your CEO is really committed to putting customers first in order to drive greater profitability, take a look at our 6 point check. On the left are the behaviours and business actions pushed through observed from CEO’s who prioritise customers:
When the CEO leads; the business, all employees, customers and ultimately shareholders profit. CEO as king of CX is crucial to maximise the profit potential from such an investment.
The CEO is key, but a successful CX strategy is much more involved. If you want to know if your overall CX plan is effective, try Lexden’s ‘The Right Direction’. In two weeks we will identify where you are now, where you could be and recommend how to get there.
Posted by Christopher Brooks, Customer Experience Consultant, Lexden
Lexden is a Customer Experience & Value Proposition Consultancy
We help clients profit from customer opportunities and challenge | We achieve this by helping to understand what makes customers tick, building memorable customer experiences and creating engaging customer value propositions.
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