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  • Writer's pictureMichelle Batt, CCXP

How to Score 3 CX Wins in 1 -- Engage Your Front-Line to Improve the Customer Experience!

Updated: May 5, 2021

Guest post by Michelle Batt, CCXP

In order to find out what your customers need or want why not ask your own people?

I’ve seen this work multiple times and in various types of environments.

How can your employees really help?

Your front-line team consists of those who regularly interact with your external customers. They know your customers pretty darn well! You can ask them specific questions about needs and expectations.

You can learn from them about internal policies, processes, and/or systems that either help or hinder their ability to provide great experiences. You can also ask them for new ideas for offers, products, or services that would be well received and for ideas that would improve the experience provided.

By engaging your front-line employees — and doing it well — your organization can experience this "Win-Win-Win" and differentiate your business from the competition.

How does this help you win…times 3?

#1 Win — Captures quality feedback and perceptions for your organization. Your teams know the people they serve.

Although it’s not always a “representative sample,” it is extremely valuable voice of customer (VOC) data that can and should complement your other VOC and operational data. You just need to figure out how to leverage it to take action.

#2 Win — Increases engagement and motivates employees.

When you ask and really listen to them, it’s amazing the excitement that can be generated. I have personally seen this happen and have heard employee feedback like, “This is the first time I’ve been asked,” and, “I am happy to share what I see and hear.”

The most important thing is that leaders must act on some insight(s) gathered, place trust in those employees to help manage those actions, and communicate back to the team. In terms of recognition, you could provide a prize or other reward, but I’ve found that’s not even necessary… just a simple announcement or recognition is very effective. Your employees generally like to help, and love being listened to.

#3 Win — Impacts results for your organization in various ways.

This type of effort costs less than any typical customer research effort, so you can save money and/or re-direct some of your research budget. As you pull employees into energizing, collaborative CX-related sessions, you will see improved engagement levels, increased productivity, and decreased turnover.

And, as you take action on things employees suggest, you will improve the experience your organization provides. This helps you increase loyalty and customer lifetime value, add new customers, boost revenues, identify cost-cutting opportunities; all of this impacts your bottom line results.

Where can and does this work? Just about everywhere!

  • It works in the health care setting. I worked with a large Washington, D.C. metro area health care provider to capture insights and take action to cut unnecessary expenses, improve employee and volunteer engagement, and patient and family satisfaction.

  • It works in the technology and service provider world. I built this activity into a regular program serving wireless communications customers in Latin America.

  • It works in hospitality. Marriott, Ritz Carlton, and others have shown how this works. They regularly engage front-line employees to improve the experiences they deliver.

This can work in every environment, profit and non-profit organizations, private and public sectors, government agencies, B2B, B2C, really pretty much everywhere!

By engaging your front-line employees — and doing it well — your organization can experience this "Win-Win-Win" and differentiate your business from the competition.

Have you done some of this? What results have you seen? Share your experiences and reach out to me if you’d like to discuss how it’s done.

Follow Michelle on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Clubhouse! Image courtesy of Shutterstock, under license to Michelle Batt.

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