Customer Success Initiative: Team Meeting Summary

Kelly Murray , March 4, 2014

Three minute video summary:

Consortium members met in Tampa in January to explore and iterate on the models that make up the Customer Success Initiative.

Our working definition of Service Excellence is:
Maximizing customer-realized value/success through the use of our products and services

This entails providing easy and seamless service, integrated into the context of use, and a focus on the continuous improvement of the whole customer experience. While support organizations traditionally focus on providing assistance when things go wrong, they are uniquely positioned to create unexpected added value for customers.

This team meeting focused on the Customer Success framework, including culture considerations, a touch point model to cover all aspects of the customer lifecycle, and the processes involved in servicing those touch points.

Thanks so much to SYKES, who hosted this meeting. We were treated to a tour of the fantastic Sykes Support Center, which was designed to inspire intrinsic motivation, collaboration, and education.

Esteban Kolsky from ThinkJar joined us to discuss past and emerging trends in customer service and knowledge management. All signs point to the necessity of a more collaborative enterprise!

Bo Young from SYKES presented their work on calibrating the customer experience, which includes 4 components: active listening, social monitoring, process monitoring and design, and speech analytics for continuous improvement.

Jim Pendergast from Sage talked about their customer experience optimization program, by which they listen, measure, and act on customer feedback from several different sources. Once they gather this feedback, they put it through what they call The Grinder, and measure it against their brand promise. This provides them a way to prioritize customer issues, which then goes to a cross-departmental council, and they work on improvements. They’ve seen great results!

Brad Smith from Sage explained a bit about the development of their brand promise. Having a brand promise and having it known throughout the organization sets the expectation for the customer and enables the company to meet the customer’s needs.
Brad described the customer experience as equaling expectation (which comes from the brand promise) minus perception, times emotion.

During Open Space, the group explored great questions around enhancing the customer experience and deepening our understanding of its impact. Notes from these sessions are available to Consortium members on the wiki.

Time was spent discussing ways to measure the impact of a Customer Success Initiative. The ultimate goal is to improve our customer retention, acquisition, and promotion, while fulfilling our brand promise.

Members can find meeting notes and more information on the wiki (email Kelly Murray for access).

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