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  • Dean posted an update in the group Group logo of Customer Experience CultureCustomer Experience Culture 5 years, 11 months ago

    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 would you make your company culture more focused on customer experience?

    • 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 laying off people. The only way for a company to focus on the customer is for the company to be doing so well that they have the time to focus on something other than money. If they are the top company in their field, like Apple, then they have the time and money to spend on their customers. Until that happens, though, most companies are more focused on staying afloat.

      • 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 amount of your focus and attention. That is how it is for the bank to focus on both. Imagine how hard and confusing it would be to tell half of the staff to focus on profits and the other half to focus on the customer. Everyone would be confused and divided. That is why I believe it should just be about the customer.

    • 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 you got that general idea and mindset started. To get things working well, you need to emphasize that the customer is just as important as the profits to be made. Really, though, if the company isn’t focused on customers, it won’t translate down to the individual employees either.
      In the end, I’ll say this: if you aren’t already inclined to care about people, then it’s pretty hard for you to care about the customer while on the job.

      • 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 of it like a week of training and then a week of crash course experience. If an employee does not do well with customers they probably are better off with back of the house duties like accounting. It is not a bad thing and they are not bad employees, just they do not do well with customers.

          • 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 to the banking industry, but let me modify the phrase a bit. Banks need to adopt a system of “compassionate, personal, and flexible financial support.” Ascension Health uses their system because those are the key tools that allow it to best serve its patients; these patients who are in need of medical treatment are far more in need of someone to help support and care for them in the process. That person cannot be mechanical – they need to be warm and loving, making them belong. A parallel situation occurs within the banking industry: people want someone who is concerned about their financial situation and future, not a banker focused on the bottom line. What it boils down to is the company pushing the concept of retaining customers and improving the way that they interact with the company. The companies in question need to tell their employees to make their customers feel welcome and treat them as if they were serving their friends and family. When you picture your customers as those you know, you are more inclined to treat them with respect, dignity, and consideration. In doing so, you help to establish a positive relationship and convince the customer to return, making your job easier because they are comfortable interacting with you. For both parties, this is a win-win situation.

      • 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 may seem like a “push” system, but what is best is to immerse employees in the company culture and mindset so that they adopt it on their own.

    • 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 🙂