Experience Action

Customer Experience (CX) Training

December 20, 2022 Jeannie Walters, CCXP Episode 3
Experience Action
Customer Experience (CX) Training
Show Notes Transcript

❔ "Is customer experience training a one time process or is it ongoing?" ❔

Sounds like this one will have a pretty simple answer, right? As with all things in business, ongoing training is always beneficial. For customer experience (CX) training, this sometimes isn't as straightforward as other types of on-the-job training. We talk about CX and our goals, but we don't take the time to connect those with other departments, which can leave our CX programs feeling disjointed.

In this week's episode, Jeannie dives into this seemingly easy question in more detail. She talks about how having a pervasive view of customer experience in your company culture creates the best environment for CX to thrive. Listen for actionable tips and suggestions that you can implement within your company to improve your customer experience (and employee experience), from training onward.

Resources Mentioned:
Experience Investigators Website -- https://www.experienceinvestigators.com
Get a year of free Customer Experience Resources -- https://www.YearofCX.com

Want to ask a question? Visit www.speakpipe.com/experienceaction to leave Jeannie a voicemail! (And don't forget to follow Jeannie on LinkedIn! www.linkedin.com/in/jeanniewalters/)


Experience action. Let's stop just talking about customer experience, employee experience and the experience of leaders. Let's turn ideas into action. Your host, Jeannie Walters, is an award winning customer experience expert, international keynote speaker. And founder of Experience Investigators, a strategic consulting firm, helping companies increase sales and customer retention through elevated customer experiences. Ready, set, action.

Jeannie Walters:

Hi everyone. Welcome to the Experience Action podcast. My name is Jeannie Walters. I'm so glad you're here. This is all about answering your questions. So don't forget that you can leave me a voicemail at speakpipe. com slash experience action. And that's what this next person did and she asked a great question. So let's get right to it.

Listener Question:

Is customer experience training a one time process or is it ongoing?

Jeannie Walters:

Okay, there are so many things I love about this question because it sounds so simple. Is it ongoing? Or should we just do it once? Should we just knock it out? What should we do about customer experience training? And the first thing I would say is, let's make sure we're talking about the same thing. Because sometimes people call and they think they want customer experience training, when really they're talking about one customer service issue. And so I encourage you to think about what are your goals here? When I think about customer experience and the way to kind of build a customer centric culture, This has everything to do with it. And there are several considerations for how to really use training, use learning and education as a way to make a real difference in your culture. Because customer experience is more than one area, one product service or person. To get success here, it requires really everyone in the organization to understand what customer experience success is, what expectations customers have, and how best to deliver on them. We really want to take a thoughtful approach to training. So, a couple things that I've seen happen that I would just caution you against. One is, don't think this is just for your customer facing folks. If you only talk about customer experience with the people who are on the front lines, your cashiers, your technicians, your customer support people, then you're really missing an opportunity to build a culture of customer centricity throughout your organization. And one of the traits of successful organizational culture is how there's an intangible but important aspect here that we want all employees to see who we are and where we fit in the world. And so in order to do that, we need to be pervasive. And this is actually according to research that was published in the Harvard Business Review. And I really agree if culture is touted as customer first or customer centric, that mindset and strategy need to be pervasive in the way employees communicate and learn throughout their entire tenure, no matter what their role. So when we think about how this actually gets applied, sometimes I see things like we have CX day, we have day of the customer, we send our executives into the stock room for a day a year to really see what it's like. But all of those are a little one off, and yes, there can be tremendous learnings from them. But when we're thinking about how, what's the point of training? The point of training is really to get people to internalize ideas so that they can be better at their jobs, so that they can deliver on the expectations for customers. And frankly, so that they can see opportunities for your business. They're so good. They're so entrenched that they start seeing, Oh, you know what, if we improve things over here, that will make a major difference to the customer journey and we will benefit from it. The other thing I see is that we put training in the onboarding process for people who are newly hired into the company. So we say, okay, you've got three days of onboarding. And that's where they learn how to fill out their payroll documents. That's where they figure out where to file complaints if they had it. All those things. And then they might get a little bit of, "Here's what we think about customer experience, and we expect you to always put the customer first," or something like that. But we really want to think about laying the foundation and then continuing a drumbeat, a cadence of communication around this. Sometimes what I like to think about is ongoing education that can be achieved by understanding the employee's journey. So all employees can benefit from repeated ongoing training on ways to deliver a successful customer experience. And this consistency is what sends a message. Customer experience is not a fad here. It's not something we're just going to mention in passing. It is a true part of the culture of the organization and it's a business strategy that we think everybody's involved with. Sometimes I recommend partnering with your internal communications team. Or your learning and development team. They have great people there who we can tap into and say, "Hey, help us build a curriculum around here. Help everyone in the organization understand how to connect their role and their daily efforts to the customer experience that we deliver." Here are some examples. Use your communications calendar to reinforce themes, just like you would for any other communication strategy. So, we did one for a client where it looked like this. One month we talked about dashboards. What are customer experience dashboards? How do we read them? What do they mean? How do they understand them? What are our goals? So that anybody who comes across a dashboard isn't just looking at graphs, they're actually starting to get understanding on, Oh, I understand why this means, what this means and why it's important. Another thing might be how we gather feedback from customers. Let's talk about all the different ways, all the different tools we have. When do we send out surveys? Where does that information go? What are we really trying to find out? All of those things that will help everybody in the organization understand what are we asking customers about and what do we do with that information. The next one I'm a big fan of, have a month of empathy. How do we show up for each other and for our customers? This ties directly back to your values. This ties directly back to understanding that every single person in the organization delivers to the customer. Because if we're delivering to one another, ultimately that's for the customer. So if you have people who think, well, I never talk to customers, so this doesn't apply to me, that is a huge red flag. Create a theme for training around empathy. Another one is our customer's journey. What does it look like today? What are we working on? How about our customer's journey tomorrow? What are some of the ideal things that we want to introduce into the customer's journey and why? How do we use best practices like journey mapping and service blueprints to develop better experiences? Also, when we say customer service, what does that really mean? Have we committed to a service code, for instance? That's a tool that we have that we love. Because, ultimately, customer service comes down to a lot of judgment calls. And the more information we can give people about our vision, our values, what success looks like, that universal idea of how we talk about customer experience, then the better off that will be. So the list goes on and on and on, but essentially you want to make sure that you have this foundation of universal customer experience, language and learning and development and training, because then you want to get into those individual roles and responsibilities. So, those themes could apply across your organization, but then you want to work with your leaders. Work with departmental leaders to zero in on what's needed for each group. Now, customer facing teams are the most obvious here, but challenge others to develop specific education. For instance, customer service and customer success might have training plans around service specific situations, like dealing with unhappy customers or having renewal conversations. But these should fit into the bigger themes and still be seen as connected to that customer experience training, not just generic service training. What about the technology team? They might be able to benefit from education around the customer journey, as well as how customer expectations are shifting based on the overall marketplace. They often welcome conversations about aspirational customer journeys and how to better align technology goals with that. So some of these training opportunities are actually cross functional collaboration opportunities as well. You know, a great example that I heard of recently was DoorDash, which is a restaurant delivery service you've probably heard of. They started realizing that they were really losing touch with what was actually happening for their drivers, the people who actually pick up the food and deliver it to customers, as well as their customers. So they reinstated what they call their WeDash Corporate program. And this program requires each employee, regardless of their department or role, to make one customer delivery per month or shadow a customer service representative. The goal is to ensure there is understanding throughout the organization of the driver and the customer experience. And so when you think about why they had to do that, that's a perfect example of how this should be an ongoing experience. We should always be talking about customer experience. We should always be training. We should always be learning. We should always be supporting the development of our employees. So offer that customer day more than once a year. Make sure that you're asking your departmental leads, what do you need? What, what would help you? And then make sure that those themes are throughout your organization because everybody benefits from customer experience education like this. And then get creative. Some of the things that I love, create a book club focused on customer experience and invite authors to discuss customer focused ideas. Develop a customer room either in person or virtually. This is a room where employees can literally walk through the journey and see the communications. Experience the challenges and receive delivery of the product or service just as a customer would, or ask leaders who are committed to the customer experience to present to the entire organization and share what they're doing. And then don't make this over complicated. Offer lunch and learns where different employees can share their experiences and showcase successes. Because customer experience is a mindset, a strategy, and a business discipline. And we need to treat it that way throughout the organization and provide the resources and support employees need to be as educated and empowered as possible. Thanks so much for this question and thank you so much for listening. Ask your own question at speakpipe. com slash experience action. To learn more about our strategic approach to experience, check out free resources at experienceinvestigators. com. Where you can sign up for our newsletter, our year of CX program, and more. And please follow me, Jeannie Walters on LinkedIn. Thank you so much for joining us today. And don't just talk about customer experience, act on it. See you next week.