When a business’s quintessential creation is a result of new knowledge and skills gained through the community’s learning experience in engaging with it, but however, cannot be held or touched, the quality of what the business sells becomes a different challenge to tackle. Operators of intangible goods must therefore focus primarily on manifesting added values to each facilitation that relays to the customer’s decision in next occurrence of obtaining a service, again. Repeat purchases are often a measure of brand loyalty and, for that reason, accounted by marketing research professionals in attempt to evaluate a business. A repeat purchase may or may not happen when expectations are met but is very likely to take place when expectations are exceeded. By the book, to invent that auxiliary value and get the customer to internalize it, the organization must own and be able to communicate a clear Customer-Centric vision to all departments and matrixes throughout the organization, vertically as well as horizontally. In practice, however, regardless of how loud and clear what is propagated, awareness can be lacking amongst human resource components pertinent to doing just that –seeing things from the customers’ perspective. The indifference to taking the extra step beyond standard routines stems from the two fundamental psychological cornerstones to desirable organizational behavior – Pride and Gratitude, or the lack of either.
Detrimental in silo commando, yet, when a person “is and sees him or herself to be worthy of great things”, and, also grateful for the opportunity to prove and contribute his or her merit to that worth, Pride can be the mother of all virtues for an organization with a matching cause. What happens most of the time is an employee either grateful to earn a good living but not so proud of the work being done nor the employer as an organization, or, proud of his or her ability to contribute but ungrateful for the provided opportunity. The latter group often stemming from egotistical parameters and the attitude that no one else can do what they do; thus, only they should lead. As pride is the underlying catalyst for inspiration, passion, ownership, objectivity and other crucial settings, all of which further catalyzes innovation; the lack of it should see a shortage of new ideas in an organization, let alone having the culture and structure in place to nurture it should it be (conducive environments). Forging team players further complicate matters. Aside from how they view themselves, members must also perceive co-workers to be worthy of the cause as well. A lot of times, the default attitude is the alternative to endorsing team members for virtuous traits, vision, or professionalism; the acknowledgement that the ship won’t sail unless everyone rows and rows hard. Tolerance, or what most are familiar with in team contexts as Cohesion, and so came the expression “walking the teamwork tightrope”. Any good coach will share the opinion that cohesion is an acquirable trait – with sound leadership. Leading by Example and Leading from the Podium are both indirect leadership techniques crucial to “boosting morals and rallying the troops” and letting the members figure out why it is they are not accomplishing anything as a team. Authenticity, knowledge and compassion are the traits required to carry out the task successfully. More candidates throughout history have tried and fell short.
An old equivocation goes: “leaders are from Dystopia and dictators are from Utopia”. Although a metaphorical hedge, leaders can actually be perceived as authentic and compassion for his or her ability to embrace human nature. We’re a shade of two colors, not purely black or white. Shakespeare (16th – 17thAC) has reigned an audiences through the centuries for sympathizing with the villain. We are all a victim or our own circumstances. According to NY Times, success, increasingly so in the early 21st century, is not an indicator of the individual’s exemplary innate abilities, but rather, that the parents probably did really well. Perhaps this is what dictators throughout history failed to grasp, by expecting people to be able to take the noble high road as an enlighten monk would and simply discard self-limiting traits and circumstances with sheer will power. Yes, perseverance is the common denominator among leaders, but even it depends on a strong support system that will see a desirable behavior through, eventually. While the hindsight understanding to-date is rather that people never seize to rise to the occasion when they are in the right circumstances and ready for the challenge. Though human errors and limitations should to be factored in beforehand, leaders command the delta that sets the opportunity difference between inspiration and aversion, i.e., a virtue is overlooked while a vice is discredited in lieu. It’s a double-whammy effect. At the end of the day, one team goes home knowing exactly what they do well and hungry for more while the other knows not much beyond what they shouldn’t do. Humility also goes a long way in breaking the ice and winning the war of hearts and minds. Positive reinforcement has been around for a very long time, around a century to-date; Carrots & Sticks – since the time of book itself. The middle path outlook in Por-Piang philosophy out ages everyone having been around for the longest twenty five centuries to-date, conveying the same ‘balanced approach’ to human behavior, roughly around the same period democracy was conceived (5 BC).
Leaders that have mastered the craft are able to get by for the long run, campaigning with poetry and managing with pros. They don’t get accused of hypocrisy for asking the team to do something against their personal comforts. Taken together, arguably, integrity, compassion and humility are not skillsets to be leaned, but rather, outlooks to be embraced early on in life to come across as authentic. Point being, it takes an incredible depth and width of conscious, perspective and experience to lead effectively. As the ability to transpire behavior is key, individual accomplishments that don’t move minds and matters does not automatically equate to plausible leadership, thus, the realization that not everyone are meant to step up to the plate. Organizations with effective traditions in selecting their leaders can take their teams far beyond those without it. China is a perfect example of what leaders must go through to be selected for the top seat. In the U.S. Army, promotable leaders are sent to the PLDC school (Primary Leadership Development Course) to be evaluated and qualify for the position beforehand. By the time the soldier is eligible for Command Sergeant Major, he or she is sent back to school for an entire year. Authenticity and compassion and therefore team rallying abilities are tested and scrutinized vigorously accordingly to the scope and scale of the command post to be assumed.
Cohesion touches the realms and sub-realms of Por-Piang philosophy such as integrity, open-mindedness and respect, as well. Without a good balance between the forces, the committee can patch the symptoms for as long as it cares to with little success should the cause be neglected. With it, on the other hand, a Customer-Centric culture can be forged, one that keeps the client’s perspective front and center at all times. It begins with the same approach to solving any predicament; one has to first and foremostly acknowledge that there is, indeed; a problem (without any fingers being pointed) to start fixing it. With a plausible dilemma and a progressive audience, awareness is next on the agenda across team matrixes. Here are 5 techniques for maximizing the whoopla coefficient:
1. 1. Start by Listening: Listen to customer comments from whatever channel it comes through, and respond to requests with the shortest turnaround time possible. This is the most basic technique for letting the customer know that you are “listening to what customers want.”
2. Leverage Customer Data: Gathering and analyzing customer data throughout the service lifecycle not only allows for a better grasp on contributing factors in different steps, it also serves as an excellence measure stick to gauge effectiveness of service operations and processes which further generates new ideas for both existing and innovative customer centric developments.
3. Foster a sense of Accountability: Staff at all levels must be given a key role to drive and create a better experience for customers. With new services and information affecting the experience of customers, organizations must assess and take in to account the impact on employees throughout business processes and departments as well. To ensure that everyone understands the corporate’s position and mission statement going forward. Responsibilities and KPIs vary across divisions but the overall objective remains the same – to please the customer.
4. Assertiveness: To develop services by listening to what customers want and collecting and analyzing customer data, the business then relays strategic duties down the chain of command with goals for employees to achieve in the process. Sometimes, a little pressure is required to attain the level of responsiveness to the needs of customers in the shortest turnaround time possible, such as establishing a standard operating procedure maximum response time to trigger a faster preliminary reaction to service related complaints, for instance, to within one hour. Doing so can trigger enthusiasm for employees at all stages to accomplish the mission in light of developing a better overview of both their department and the business.
5. Celebrate when the customer wins: Businesses often forget to keep track of changes to the customer’s development or success. Doing so forgoes one of the biggest positive reinforcement to its own workforce that made it happen in the first place. Always remember to rejoice the staff dedicated to the wellbeing of the delivery of valuable experiences to the customers. Recognition for met standards is one thing. Celebrating the passion that allowed an employee to go above and beyond in meeting the customers’ dreams in front of everyone is an entirely different level of effective positive reinforcement. Doing so creates a driving force behind both the recognized and the recognizing employees to realize why it is they do what they do – a sense of purpose and fulfillment of helping someone.
As technology advances consumption patterns change as well. What follows is the reinvention of the corporate culture to adopt mission statements that best align their cause with success. A corporate culture consistent with new parameters and the ever evolving world is required for this time of change. For the short term outlook, success depends on a Customer-Centric perspective to create and transcend that added value, deliver beyond expectations, build loyalty, meet objectives, and ultimately, sustain a profitable business over the long run. Nobody’s fool, it’s a long journey. To get there, to cultivate the culture; organizations must first embrace change (acknowledging the problem). Then, make the 5 aforementioned techniques a new normal.
Pride is a crucial success factor to sustaining a customer centric culture – and the most difficult stem to scion. Put in the wrong settings, vice fills the void instead. Without it, though, the responsible agent above would respond to the customer with the fastest turnaround time possible but omit requests that are too inconvenient to fulfill should no one be watching. Organizations that know how to communicate and inspire new behavior go through smooth transitions in comparably shorter periods adapting with change and adopting new normals. To do so, top level leaders need to be the best Sales to their own force, to “boost morals and rally the troops”. Generals that can’t depict why exactly it is they’re so proud to fight shouldn’t expect self-prophesies from down the chain. But then, they wouldn’t have had the stars pinned in the first place.
Compile by BLOG.SCGLogistics
References and photos entrepreneur.com, pixabay.com (account : vsalgado23)
geralt //// vsalgado23