Customer Experience Culture

  • Ray Andrew posted an update in the group Group logo of Customer Experience CultureCustomer Experience Culture 4 years ago

    I currently am working for MGM as an internal auditor and I noticed how important it is to build a culture centered around the customer. Even in a position that is not customer facing, we are trained in proper customer service and understanding customer needs. This is something that I am seeing more and more in businesses, even those that have…[Read more]

    • Well it’s pretty common sense that you need to be able to deal with customers. Customers are the most important part of the business, and you need to make sure they’re happy for the business to do well. Common sense.

    • I’d say that it’s less about the culture and more about the type of people working there. You can try to train people to be more customer centric, but that’ll only go so far. Not like you can teach a dog how to purr like a cat, and the same is true for people. You are better off hiring people who think that way, then training them to treat…[Read more]

    • Well, sounds like you’re getting a good taste of what the behind the scenes business world is like! It’s not your run of the mill process 🙂 And customers are at the center of it all. All my friends have gone through customer training, and customer service is really important!

  • Dean posted an update in the group Group logo of Customer Experience CultureCustomer Experience Culture 5 years, 1 month ago

    I really am liking how a lot of companies are changing things up. We had some consulting company come in to evaluate how our business is running and they were really focusing on making things better for the customer. They redid the layout of the store and everything. But is this something that is going to be done over and over again across all…[Read more]

    • I do not believe that this is a phase of business that can be so easily commoditized for the simple fact that it is a change that is vastly expensive in terms of both money and human resources. It is difficult to overhaul a business to be more relationship centric, so many companies will opt to avoid this option of improving operations. There will…[Read more]

    • Money is king when it comes to businesses, If it’s something expensive we’re sure to see people drop it in favor of keeping money in the bank. I know I would. So yeah, if you make the investment you’ll get some returns and you won’t have everyone changing over all at once. Some people will, some people won’t. It’s up to the business owner and…[Read more]

    • I am not sure that many companies would invest in reestablishing their culture and workforce in a more relationship centric fashion. For mature companies, overhauling their operations so such an extent would probably be more detrimental overall despite the long term benefits. Dramatic changes would involve a lot of reassessment of value and worth…[Read more]

    • Aaron replied 5 years ago

      Well of course it’s gonna be a problem. You think that companies are gonna ignore what is going to make them money? My advice – save your money and stay the course like a sensible business owner. You’ll make all that money the rest of them are losing while they try to “innovate”

  • I typically do not have a great deal of praise for company cultures, for most are simply lacking in terms of emphasizing a customer experience mentality. However, I have noticed that many smaller operations, in this most recent case a local gym in my city, tend to practice a much more relationship centric method of doing things. In my most recent…[Read more]

    • Gyms are a great source of inspiration in my opinion, especially in terms of creating culture or innovation. I had said that my gym offered these “scenario” classes where they put you in different situations, such as a river rescue or obstacle course. I saw that as a new experience outside the standard gym routine. I didn’t see anything like you…[Read more]

    • So how does this apply to banks? I can’t see where you can cross over the ideas. It’s not like a bank will ask everyone how they want to bank since everyone will have a different opinion.

    • My belly may be evidence to show that I haven’t been to the gym in a while, but I really like this idea. 🙂 To answer our good friend Deano, it’s about getting people into spending time and working with the bank. They got people at the gym to stay and talk about what they want, so they wanna come back since they want to see their ideas come to…[Read more]

    • See, this is where I think it makes sense. There are people actually there to do things, so why not make it something they can be connected to? People are attached to money, sure, but they aren’t going out of their way to make it something special. No one wants to go to deal with their money because it is stressful. So I’m not sure how this goes…[Read more]

  • Have you ever realized that customer experience culture is simply derived from that of the employees? I had always believed that company culture, and likewise the experience culture, was molded by the company itself from the top down. While this may be true in large corporations that have been widely established, I noticed that on an individual…[Read more]

    • I figured that I would try to space out my answers to this so I don’t burn out my brain. You know, I’m not as young as I used to be so I can’t overwork myself! 😉 What you’re talking about sounds like something Michael would say though! Personality is what makes the customer experience, you know 🙂 So people really do make the culture stand out,…[Read more]

      • I do not disagree with you at all; human interaction requires that individuals be engaging and responsive. When you reminisce on a memorable experience, the sights and sounds are clear, but they do not stand out as well as the people who truly had an impact upon your experience. Instances where individuals caught your eye or make a mark in your…[Read more]

  • So this post will be a little abstract, but just recently happened to me so I feel like it is a topic that might generate some discussion within the community. Typically, we will engage in discussion about privately held businesses, namely banks, but we tend to forget that customer experiences are prominent throughout our daily lives. Earlier this…[Read more]

    • Hey, you can’t blame a cop for being a cop, that’s just the way it is. But man, that sounds like a crazy scene, just strolling through a parking lot to being hit by a car to having a cop standing over you. The waiting and all of the exams and everything they put you through is just the way it is, not like you can fight the law, even if you didn’t…[Read more]

      • That really is a flaw in how people are treated. As public servants, they should be more partial to the opinions of those they serve and the expectations of society as a whole. Had this been a more severe case then yes, I would understand the entire ordeal with a much more positive note, but their application of the law was too constricting. At…[Read more]

        • Well when money is on the line you know you have to cover yourself and make sure you aren’t the one being eyed, am I right? No one wants to be blamed for cutting corners when someone ends up being sued, so I guess they’re making sure they keep their jobs. That’s America now, we’re basically stuck with that as part of society.

    • This response may be long-winded, so I apologize in advance for my lack of brevity. However, I believe that what I have to say is wholly necessary to convey the rationale behind the actions of the officers, as well as how the situation may have altered the otherwise normal conditions of the affair. Let me begin by saying that I am glad that you…[Read more]

      • The irony in your argument is that the officers did see what had occurred and had even remarked that they were bound by law to follow the procedures. I cannot say that I am upset with them – I am quite happy that they knew what to do to the letter – but I am upset with how restricting these laws can be. We are not allowed to make rational…[Read more]

    • Well sounds like you’ve had quite the experience! I’m so glad you’re not hurt! 😀 Imagine what we would do without you to give us your insight and opinion – we’d be so lost without you 🙁 Not everyone can say that they walked away after being hit by a car, but you’re one of them. I don’t wanna blame the police for being overly safe…but they were…[Read more]

      • With how society is structured, it is essentially mandatory to have a set of guidelines that you must abide by in order to avoid the possibility of lawsuits and litigation. However, there must be a statute that allows a victim to forego medical examination as long as they are willing to also forfeit the right to legal action. While it is important…[Read more]

    • What kind of tests did they put you under that would take so long? When I was in an accident I was out of there in maybe an hour and a half. Plus, wouldn’t most cops listen to you if you were saying that you were good to go? It doesn’t make sense.

      • In addition to an assessment of the damage and situation, I was subjected to a medical examination by first responders, as well as a secondary examination at the university clinic. While this should not have taken a long time, I already had previous injuries from playing sports so I had to explain and differentiate which pain was caused by…[Read more]

    • Now that everyone’s gotten their chance to spout off what they think is “right”, let me go ahead and let you know what really is the right way to do things. You can’t expect public services to work like a regular business does. Look at how we’re in a government shutdown right now! There are steps in place that they have to follow, and if they…[Read more]

      • I do understand that public services operate in a different fashion than a typical business, but they do still have the goal of serving customers. You are right – protocol is difficult to avoid and does result in extra steps that are seemingly insignificant. However, it is not impossible to skirt these rules. While it may seem unlawful, I believe…[Read more]

        • If you really think playing the ethics card makes sense, it does not because these rules are essentially laws. Ethics may make people think differently in situations, but the law is the law. Waivers may work, but you know as well as I do that they still require the rules to be changed before they can be used. That’s what it boils down to – the…[Read more]

  • Okay, here’s another one. I was just on a business trip to Russia, and at my first ATM stop, I found that my ATM card was blocked. I checked online, and I noticed that there were about 3000 USD worth of transactions on the card from ATMs in Mexico. I called the bank, and they informed me that they had blocked the card and would send me a new…[Read more]

    • Well, that was not a picture that I wanted to imagine. I think I can even taste the sliminess of that worm wriggling around in there 🙁 Yuck! But back to what I’m really trying to say. That’s just terrible that the bank can’t have everyone follow through and make things perfect from start to finish. Like you’d have someone to confirm the issue,…[Read more]

    • Sounds like you had quite the trip there. From Virgin to ATMs you’ve gotten a crazy experience. I’m still amazed they managed to get 3 grand out of your card before you realized it happened. Crazy that they were able to get your card info without having your card. That’s Mexico for you though. Too bad that the service wasn’t top notch from top to…[Read more]

    • The response to your predicament, in my opinion, exceeds what we would typically expect from a banking entity, yet fails to achieve the standards set by other businesses – say, a retail company like Zappos which goes above and beyond their scope of support to assist the customer. There is a lack of consistency with their customer service…[Read more]

    • So what exactly is the line between good and bad service for you? Does one person make or break the entire experience, or is there some give there? I mean, no tolerance seems like it’s tough to keep up when people are bound to make mistakes. What makes this situation so bad in the grand scheme of things?

      • I see that your questions have not been answered yet, so I will try to answer the questions with an unbiased opinion and probably how most people would respond to this situation. Hopefully Michael will be able to respond later on as well. The line between good and bad is wholly based on opinion, so I cannot speculate on what that line would be for…[Read more]

    • From my experience as a customer service and technical support representative for Apple, I would say that the customer service field as a whole is flawed in the sense that much of the experience is dictated by the representative handling the case. Personality, mood, and time of day play an overwhelming role in how a customer is treated; the…[Read more]

  • So I usually praise Virgin companies for having such a great culture amongst their team members, but the other day I was on a Virgin America flight from Las Vegas to Los Angeles, and I had a first hand encounter with a flaw in their corporate culture.

    Virgin prides itself on the culture of their people and the image of the brand in all of their…[Read more]

    • While I cannot really say that I have a very strong opinion on airlines (I am not exactly a frequent flyer, nor have I flown with Virgin Airlines) I would agree that from my understanding Virgin tries to promote its image as one of class and sophistication. A flight attendant, or any employee for that matter, should hold themselves in a position…[Read more]

    • Michael, while I would usually give an employee the benefit of the doubt and attribute this shortcoming to a lack of experience, the issue in this case stems from the personality of the individual. If she had understood her position and the respect she garners, then she would not have conducted herself in such a sloppy manner. This is not to say…[Read more]

    • So what is Virgin trying to show themselves as anyways? I can’t tell if they’re supposed to be that budget airline that has really cheap airfare or are they trying to be that trendy, high class sort of deal? Someone posted a video a while back in the experiential branding group and I couldn’t tell if this was supposed to be a fancy sort of airline…[Read more]

      • What they’re trying to do is to show off and say they’re the fanciest airline out there with all the hottest new tech and employees. Still, they’re trying to be like Walmart and keep costs down. The peanut butter thing isn’t even an issue. Virgin is a fancy, low cost airline with regular people who shouldn’t be scrutinized.

    • So you’re telling me that you’re judging a flight stewardess, someone who is constantly on the run serving people and operating across a crazy work schedule, about eating peanut butter and texting? This is so trivial that it’s funny. Why would you care if she’s eating on the flight? She probably didn’t get time to eat before getting on the flight,…[Read more]

    • Great to hear from you, Michael! 🙂 What isn’t so great is that flight you had to have on Virgin Airlines. 🙁 Really, how can she do all of that knowing that she’s on the clock and supposed to be a good example for fliers? Some people just need to brush up on your teachings and pick up on the fact that they need to engage the customers and make…[Read more]

    • Now Virgin is one of those carriers that I love flying. Nothing beats wifi when you’re on a flight. I mean come on, who wants to sit through a long flight with nothing to do? Not this guy, that’s for sure. Even if the stewardess was texting and snacking during the flight it doesn’t seem all that bad. You can’t expect that sort of perfection all…[Read more]

  • Sorry, originally posted in the wrong group. I’m doing a little piggybacking here but I’m thinking about it and wondering, is bad service just something that happens cause it’s such a bad job? Ray just posted about bad service when he went to eat and that got me thinking about the last time I had bad service. We had a family dinner at Yard House…[Read more]

    • Of course bad service is normal. Do you think you went every day of your working life in a good mood? Have you never gotten angry with someone and yelled at them? Maybe you’ve gone out and every single time the meal and everyone serving you has been delightful? I would bet every dollar I have that you can’t say yes to any of those questions. Peo…[Read more]

      • Bad service isn’t normal. Service should be pretty good all the time. Yeah, sometimes I’m not the happiest person or the experience isn’t great, but I still expect for my trip to the restaurant to be good. No customer should be on the receiving end of that.

      • What you are implying, Aaron, is that bad service is a part of the restaurant experience. For all intents and purposes, it is not; restaurants strive to provide the best in terms of food and service in an attempt to attract customers. While yes, bad service may come across due to the individual actions of a customer, it is not something to be…[Read more]

    • That’s terrible Dean! 🙁 I hope that you told a manager about your experience because no business ever wants to make that sort of impression. Servers need to be all smiles and care about the people around them. 🙂 They’re there to make sure customers enjoy their visit and come back (not to mention leaving big tips!) Even if it’s a rough day they…[Read more]

      • When I talk to managers they typically don’t do much. Would the manager even care about one person’s opinion?

        • Dean, while it may seem trivial to you, individual customer feedback is how a company not only builds its repertoire for serving customers, but also pinpoints bottlenecks and shortcomings of the business. Yes, it may seem as if the manager is catering to you just because you are voicing a complaint, but they are also taking a mental stock of what…[Read more]

        • Managers love to hear what customers have to say! 🙂 Satisfied customers buy more stuff, so managers want to know what will make their customers happy. Plus, who doesn’t like it when people like them back? I make some changes when I know people will like them, and I’m sure store managers do too! 😀

    • Well, it happens sometimes but it still is something that management should be trying to stop. Employees should be vigilant and diligent workers from the start of their shift to the moment they leave for the day. I know that sometimes we may want to let ourselves be governed by our emotions, but in the case of customer service worker there really…[Read more]

      • I guess that makes sense. People don’t realize that there’s problems going on for the employees too and that they need to power through it. You’re right that they need to be goo to everyone all the time. we expect service to be good and they’re the only ones we ever see, so they have to make their mark on us.

    • What you really need to do is carefully analyze the context of the situation before you can make any judgments. Everything is relative when you are giving your opinion, and while for you the service may have been subpar, for another it may have been fantastic. “Slow” and “boring” are such opinionated words that it is hard to claim that these s…[Read more]

      • You’ve got a point about jumping to conclusions. I didn’t like my time at the restaurant, but maybe that’s just me. Would you say that it’s just the employee’s fault that they let their attitude get out of hand then? They were the ones who were frustrated, so they’re the ones to blame?

        • I don’t know what Stan over here thinks, but I say it’s everyone’s fault when someone loses their temper. Managers need to make sure their employees are happy and doing their job properly. Smiles people! 🙂 The employee needs to learn to keep themselves in line too since they’re the ones dealing with the customer. It’s easy to blame the customer…[Read more]

        • In regards to your question I would place a large majority of the blame on the employee for not being able to maintain the level of composure required for their task. This is not to say that management plays no role in the matter; management has to appropriately staff their restaurant and address issues in employee behavior before conflict arises.…[Read more]

  • There are places that I love to go to for the atmosphere and the service because it really does make it a memorable experience. You can go to a restaurant and be totally underwhelmed by the food, but good service and a nice place to just sit and enjoy yourself will be able to make up for the shortcomings. However, the opposite is not true; I can…[Read more]

    • From a strictly neutral standpoint, I must say that this happens to even the best restaurants sometimes; even the most well trained staff is still human and prone to eventually make a mistake. As a consumer and a businessperson, though, I can agree that this is not what should be occurring. In the constant flux of the restaurant industry,…[Read more]

      • I can see what you mean. I probably should not be so quick to judge them considering how mistakes happen and there is no real reason to crucify them for something as small as a handful of mistakes on just one occasion. But you are resoundingly right in saying that someone should have been able to sense my displeasure and remedy it. While it would…[Read more]

    • I went there once, but I think it was better than your time there. The food was good and the place was absolutely electric! 🙂 My server was pretty good about looking after us, too, so that’s really weird that yours wasn’t so great. Maybe they were having an off day? 🙁
      But you’re right about it ruining the experience when the service is bad. I…[Read more]

      • One can only hope that it was an off day for them; if that was the quality of service for the restaurant on a regular basis, I question how they are able to stay in business. Unfortunately the rest of the experience (food, atmosphere) was not enough to truly make it worth trying again in the near future. It is hard to recover from something as…[Read more]

    • I like going to BWW after work with friends for a few beers, so we end up sitting at the bar. Is it really that busy when you sit at the normal tables? Bartenders are pretty good at the place near my office, but are servers really that bad when it comes to taking care of people? How do you think they could improve their business model?

      • Usually when I go it is to watch a game or a fight, so usually it is pretty packed in there. The bar can be pretty busy, too, but nowhere near as busy as the regular seating area. I tend to see decent service when I am at the restaurant, but nothing extraordinary. Most servers are doing their job, but you cannot say they are doing it poorly or…[Read more]

    • That’s part of the cost of doing business. You can’t make everyone happy, and obviously this time around they couldn’t meet your standards. The food was good, the place was nice, but you still want more? Really, quit being so selfish and understand that it can’t be perfect all the time. Have you seen how many people can be in a restaurant? One hal…[Read more]

      • While there are costs of doing business, I do not believe this is an error that is rooted directly in the business model or operations. This is most likely stemming from the actions of the employees who probably carried a sense of apathy towards their job. The day I was there was not the busiest of nights, nor was there any reason for other…[Read more]

  • You know, most companies are really focused on the bottom line. When a company only cares about profit, how are they going to remember to focus on the customer? I hate walking into stores where employees make it clear that all they want is your money. These guys aren’t paid enough, or aren’t concerned, or just don’t care about the customer. How w…[Read more]

    • Companies don’t only care about profit, it just is a major part of the business so it can’t be helped if they are trying to make money. Employees know that if they aren’t making money, someone is going to get cut, so they’re just looking out for their own jobs. They can’t be blamed for wanting to look good for when the managers have to start…[Read more]

      • Why can’t companies focus on both at once? Customers are why they can make money, so shouldn’t customers try to focus on their customers first?

        • While I don’t agree with Aaron, it is difficult for a company to be divided when it comes to what to focus on. Imagine if I asked you to drive me around town while also narrating your biography. Two different tasks that use two different skills (actual driving and physical movement, the other just deep thought and speaking) but each drains a huge…[Read more]

    • My experience with customer culture was always taught to me right off the bat through training. Apple had the best training because they portioned out almost an entire month for just technical and personal training for dealing with the customer. Now I won’t say it was all that helpful because you really learn most of it on the job, but at least…[Read more]

      • How much training is too much training, though? A month is a really long time for just training. Plus you say that actual experience is better than training.
        So what happens if the person doesn’t really care about people as much? Are they just doomed to be bad employees?

        • I would say that a month of training was a good amount since we had training for customer service and for troubleshooting. If I had to give a total for just the customer service, I would say that one week of full time training plus another week of supervised experience would be more than enough to get people ready for working with customers. Think…[Read more]

          • Thanks for explaining. I guess everyone fits in somewhere, just need that crash course experience to find out if you’re cut out for the job.

    • Have you read “The Ultimate Question 2.0?” I referenced it in my posting in Relationship Centricity, and I will mention it again here. Rather than allude to Apple again, I will choose a different excerpt. Ascension Health utilizes as system that emphasizes “emotional, social, and spiritual support.” Now this may not sound like it would apply t…[Read more]

      • I think I get what you’re trying to say. So companies need to push it on their employees that they need to focus on the customers?

        • “Push” is a very strong word and does not carry the same connotation as what I was trying to say in my comment. “Encourage” or “suggest” would be more appropriate, but still not fully convey what I am trying to say. Essentially, companies need to make customer centricity part of the culture so that it becomes a natural part of the job. At first it…[Read more]

    • Right on, Dean! I think many of them are just trained to be money suckers. They could at least pretend that they care, but most of the time they are not. And the sad part is that it goes across most of the industries. Companies should really focus on developing customer-centric or relationship-centric organization culture, eh?

      • I totally agree! Too many companies don’t focus on the customer relationship enough. But how do we get them to change their focus? Most businesses are just focused on the big bucks.

        • Well, we could always leave the bank right? 🙂 haha, but that wouldn’t be good for any of us. What we need to go and do is show them we want a relationship. So if you find a bank that is relationship centric, join them and show the other banks that’s what we want. Mention it to me too! I want to see Senteo’s work put into practice 🙂

  • Hi. The world id flooded with terrifying customer experience behaviors. The ones that have been brought to this community refer mostly to (I would suppose) private businesses, where the owners should pay attention to the service they provide purely because this is their money they multiply or lose on every customer interaction. However, the most…[Read more]

    • Hi! I don’t follow you 100%, what countries are you talking about? I only know of the services in the US, so not too sure I can answer this, especially since we don’t see it here. What public services are you talking about?

    • I do agree with you that there is heavy emphasis on the private sector. This possibly stems from the background of the founders and partners and the company history (see http://www.senteo.net/about/history/); each of them has a background within the banking industry, and, with the exception of Tom Mouhsian’s lobbying, it seems like they have had…[Read more]

    • I’ve been skeptical about how they avoid the public sector as well. As I see it, there are a lot of holes to fill if they plan to make this all work for public services. When there isn’t competition there’s no one to force things to improve. That’s why our services are terrible and bleed money. Employees don’t care about taxpayers or doing the…[Read more]

      • You’re right that the states are the only competition for government services, but you need to remember that a lot of these services really can’t be filled by more than one group. I don’t think society would operate well with multiple police agencies or competing welfare systems. Can you imagine calling 911 and being asked, “Would you like ABC…[Read more]

    • Yes, the discussions in most of the Community deal with private businesses, but that is because a majority of us operate within the private sector. I won’t say that I know a lot about public services, but what I do know is from personal experience. Most of the things we take for granted like infrastructure, schools, and police, vary from state t…[Read more]

    • Hi Zbigniew,

      Great to see you posting in here. There is a great case study on our website (senteo.net/transformation/case-studies/georgian-ministry-of-justice) which is the Georgian Ministry of Justice Public Service Hall. This project even won an “Innovative Government” Award from the United Nations. It’s worth a look at the case study to…[Read more]

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