The time we spend with customers is our opportunity to shine. At the end of each interaction, their relationship with us is impacted by their experience. Will they go to social media to tell their story? Or will they leave unimpressed and let down? It all happens in the seconds, minutes, hours and days we spend with them. In those moments of their lives, they depend on us. They spend their valuable time and money with us for an experience that impacts their lives. At stake - in every interaction - is future revenue, profitability and customer loyalty. So isn’t it about time that we think differently about how we are managing our customer experience? We all know silos hinder coordination and agility, and yet the evolution of our management structures can’t keep pace with the market. This article presents a way to make those silos come crashing down and start managing your company’s time with your customers more effectively - without a re-org.
Co-Founder & CEO
August 21, 2018
An alternative to journey mapping
Chart how your company spends your customers’ time.
Journey mapping can help you think about the end-to-end journey of the customer but after you’ve mapped your journey, who in the company can actually use your map? Instead, audit the time your customer spends with your company. Identify the key interactions your customer has with each department? Frame each interaction. What is supposed to happen in that time? The first step in breaking down the silos is understanding what’s in them. Getting clarity around the big moments in your customer experience is far more useful than creating a complex map of each individual touch point and possible path a customer could take.
Manage total customer time
Help everyone in your company see their time with the customer in the context of the broader experience.
With all of the key interactions of your customer experience framed, you can then share them on a digital platform for the whole company to see. This will unify your company’s view of the total time you spend with your customers. A unified view begs for and almost demands coordination. It will help everyone in the company see their time with the customer in the context of the broader experience. Are all of your customer efforts aligned toward a common goal? Is there fluidity from department to department? These are the questions that each department must answer individually and then work with one another to resolve on an ongoing basis. Silos disappear, information flows freely, and cross-functional collaboration focuses on the customer.
Align with your ‘Why’
Click on the video for Simon Sinek talking about why your company exists.
As you manage your customers’ time into the future, your plan for their time must always align with why your company exists. When we operationalize strategies, our ‘Why’ can get lost or shift in our delivery. A tremendous benefit of managing customer time holistically is that your ‘Why’ can be clearly defined for each interaction as well as for the overall experience. If your company can understand ‘How’ and ‘What’ they deliver every day in the context of your ‘Why’, you’ll attract the people who believe what you believe in every interaction you deliver to your market. You’ll use every moment of time you have with your customers to reinforce how much you care about them and why they should care that your company exists.
It’s your time
With the world moving faster and getting noisier every day, the value of time is increasing rapidly. How we choose to manage our time and our company’s time could be the determining factor between success and failure. If you choose to stay on your current course, you may soon be faced with a competitor in your category - in the mold of an Amazon, Uber, Google or Apple - that manages customer time better than you do. Once you fall behind, it’s almost impossible to catch up. It’s your time. It’s your customers’ time. It’s your employees’ time. Manage it holistically and you’ll be ahead of your time.
Install a system
Watch a brief video for an intro to our solution
Design a system to manage the time your company spends interacting with their customers. You can design your own using your existing systems, or you can consider our company’s enterprise-ready experience management system (The Experience Manager). We designed it to unify teams around how they manage their customer interactions. If you want to learn more about The Experience Manager, watch the brief video below. Whichever system you choose, start focusing your company on managing your customers’ time before your competitors do.