According to TechTarget, “Customer experience management is the collection of processes a company uses to track, oversee, and organize every interaction between a customer and the organization throughout the customer lifecycle.”
Gartner defines it as “the practice of designing and reacting to customer interactions to meet or exceed customer expectations and, thus, increase customer satisfaction, loyalty, and advocacy.”
Understanding the difference between customer experience and customer service will save you money in your contact center!
There’s a quote (which I may have evolved over the years) from Chris Zane, founder of Zane’s Cycles, that goes like this: “Customer service is what happens when the experience breaks down.”
It’s a great quote for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is the fact that it nicely differentiates “customer experience” and “customer service,” which people often confuse to be one and the same. Not so.
In the last several weeks, I’ve seen a couple articles – in reputable publications like Harvard Business Review and The Wall Street Journal – about the “dangers of hiring for culture fit.” They cited that hiring for culture fit destroys things like diversity, creativity, and innovation. And then I saw the responses on LinkedIn because it became a “today’s news and views” topic, and I was baffled.
Oh boy. I think we need to start with some definitions.
As a customer experience professional, you focus a lot on the customer. You put the customer on a pedestal. You put the customer front and center. And rightly so; without customers, you have no business. But you have to remember this: in order to deliberately design a customer-centric culture, you must put employees more first. Only when employees have a great experience can customers have a great experience, too.
I write about organizational culture and core values quite often. One of my most recent articles on this topic was about whether or not employees believe in their companies’ core values. In that post, I shared this statistic from Gallup: only 23% of U.S. employees believe that they can apply the core values to their work, while only 27% believe in the values. That’s pretty dismal, and I think I know why that’s the case.