Our listeners have problems and they let us know about it. For our I’m in a Pickle feature on the podcast, Tina in New Zealand wrote to us because the engineering firm she works with thinks customer relationships are a waste of time. She wants to know how to convince the engineers that customer relationships are what get the customer strategy gears turning toward long-term success.
I found this pickle particularly interesting because I have faced this myself in our global Customer Experience consultancy. In fact, it was the impetus for the research we did with the London School of Business that led to my third book, The DNA of Customer Experience: How Emotions Drive Value.
In this episode, we share our experiences working with firms that are less than convinced that customer relationships are essential to business success. From storytelling to Emotional Signature® research to adopting the same strategies as one would for personal relationships, we share plenty of practical tips to help Tina get out of her pickle and on her way to convincing the team to see things her way.
Key Ideas to Improve your Customer Experience
People didn’t always have interpersonal relationships. Now, we do, and not just in our personal lives. We have personal relationships in business, too. As customers, we use the same cognitive machinery to manage both types of relationships, and, not surprisingly, there are parallels in the management of them, too. We take a close look at Tina’s business pickle and present real-world, practical solutions to convince the engineers it’s worth it to develop a business relationships with customers.
Here are a few key moments in the discussion:
- 03:02 We read Tina’s pickle to set up the discussion on what business problem our listener is facing.
- 05:17 We start by looking at some of the reasons this might be happening to Tina at work and Colin shares an example of his experience in a similar situation.
- 09:21 Ryan chimes in with how convincing people to do anything requires a mixture of what they are interested in and what you are trying to tell them.
- 12:16 Colin shares how a skeptic at a German insurance company asked him to prove what Colin was saying was true, and how that led to the research behind Colin’s third book, The DNA of Customer Experience.
- 15:48 Colin share his insight on what makes successful customer-facing people and what Tina can do to optimize the experience for the engineering customers.
- 18:08 Ryan discusses how part of the convincing might require pointing out that relationships have staying power, but competitive differentiation in the marketplace.
- 20:48 Colin shares how his work with Maersk Line revealed to leadership the pitfalls of a transactional relationship with customers, and how their changes led to a giant turnaround for the company.
- 23:19 We share 5 tips (well, really only four; one of the tips will get you in trouble) for building relationships from HelpGuide.org, and our other advice for Tina and her company.
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Customer Experience Information & Resources
LinkedIn recognizes Colin Shaw as one of the ‘World’s Top 150 Business Influencers.’ As a result, he has 289,000 followers of his work. Shaw is Founder and CEO of Beyond Philosophy LLC, which helps organizations unlock growth by discovering customers’ hidden, unmet needs that drive value ($). The Financial Times selected Beyond Philosophy LLC as one of the best management consultancies for the last two years. Follow Colin on LinkedIn and Twitter.
Click here to learn more about Professor Ryan Hamilton of Emory University.
Why Customers Buy: As an official “Influencer” on LinkedIn, Colin writes a regular newsletter on all things Customer Experience. Click here to join the other 22,000 subscribers.
Experience Health Check: You already have an experience, even if you weren’t deliberate about it. Our Experience Health Check can help you understand what you have today. Colin or one of our team can assess your digital or physical Customer Experience, interacting with your organization as a customer to define what is good and what needs improving. Then, they will provide a list of recommendations for critical next steps for your organization. Click here to learn more.
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