It seems as if it was only yesterday when marketing analysts were declaring 2018 as “The Year of the Customer.” Trends in technology, along with competitive pressures, had finally shifted the balance of transactional power into the hands of the consumer.
On that notion, let me share with you a story about someone I know. It’s a story that, in fact, you may have experienced personally. This individual had a wallet filled with credit cards and held multiple bank accounts with a large financial services company. Never giving the relationship much of a second thought, they left their checking, money market, credit cards and other banking products on autopilot.
Then one day, for no apparent reason, they suddenly stopped working. All of these products, simultaneously. Suddenly, they couldn’t access balances, and their credit card was declined at the cash register. This person—hopeful that a reasonable explanation defined this issue, and eager to get a quick resolution—called the bank. Three days and six hours later, and after talking with no less than 12 people, their accounts were finally active. The original glitch, it turns out, was entirely the fault of the financial services provider.
Some of the things this person experienced during this all-too-long journey to exoneration:
In thinking about this experience, from a CEO’s perspective, it may seem like an unfortunate, isolated incident. In reality, these types of customer service glitches happen with regularity, across all kinds of B2C and B2B experiences. Can you say with certainty that your company would not allow this to happen? And if you say that, how would you know?
Here are six questions for a CEO to ask and to understand when trying to understand whether a customer service issue is percolating at their company:
As the CEO, you are responsible for your customer experience. If your business is growing, you are probably convinced you have the customer experience nailed down. In the event that you aren’t convinced, you may be missing out on a much bigger opportunity for future growth. Ask the six questions above, and look closely at your own operating practices and company culture. Are you and your team enablers of an amazing customer experience that builds incredible affinity with your customers? Or, do you assume that things will simply take care of themselves because that’s the way it’s always been done? It’s not hard to find out.