Roy's Blog: July 2010
July 28, 2010
Here are some BE DiFFERENT Strategic Acts to think about in addition to the Helium-filled Plans that are often Brave Notions that don’t find their way to the trenches where winning really occurs. In no particular order…
1. recruit people who genuinely love human beings. YES, it is Strategic!
2. take notes. It’s an expression of the fact that someone cares enough about what you are sating to record it for further deliberation and ACTION.
3. do stuff. ACTION gets results, thinking doesn’t.
4. apologize when things are screwed up. Recovery depends on assuming responsibility for what has happened. “I am truly sorry” starts off the loyalty building process the right way.
5. cut the CRAP in the organization that is no longer relevant AND that clogs the wheels of progress (Tom Peters’ call it the GRUNGE - awesome word!).
6. over-react when a customer is screwed over. Again, successful Recovery demands SPEED to get things right.
7. problem solve. Things NEVER go right the first time. SH*T Happen. Solutions are needed.
8. form cross-functional teams. Results are produced ACROSS the organization demanding people working together harmoniously.
9. tell stories. It’s a vital element of strategy. The best way of explaining to someone what the strategy means is to tell a story about it in action.
10. use Internal Report Cards to measure service quality on the inside of the organization. If internal customers aren’t dazzled it is highly unlikely (no, IMPOSSIBLE) that external ones are
11. recognize Service Heroes constantly.
12. encourage employees to successfully fail. A Successful Failure results in learning which advances the organization. An unacceptable failure has no learning element and simply destroys value.
13. practice Leadership by Serving Around is rampant across the organization.
14. gather Customer Secrets. They are the fuel that powers your marketing and service machine.
15. change your business vocabulary to be more customer-centric. Wash your mouth out with Customers!
16. get feedback on your performance from your boss, peers and “subordinates” by using 360 degree feedback.
Are you practising these? If not, start the journey…
Related Blog Articles
Hire Human Being Lovers
Be Anal About Execution
Customerize your Language
Leadership by Serving Around
Execute. Don’t Pontificate!
Do You Speak “Customerese”?
Service Recovery: Recover from your Screw-ups
July 26, 2010
The importance of SERVANT LEADERSHIP, by Tom Peters…
It seems that the ‘Chief’ designation is well used in organizations these days: Chief Executive Officer, Chief Financial Officer, and Chief Marketing Officer are but a few positions that carry this prestigious Tag.
The Serving side of a business (some call it the Service side) gets short shrift however. Very few companies have established a Chief of this side of the business. The CSO, Chief Serving Officer, must in my view be established in any organization who has a strategy to acquire and retain loyal customers. This is a huge mistake! If Serving is a critical component of your strategy you need single finger accountability to a senior executive for the flawless delivery of Core Service and the creation of Dazzling Customer Experiences.
Diluting the responsibility across the organization will simply not work. It won’t get the attention required. Nor the Focus. It requires a Champion who can sit in Executive Team Meetings and hammer the table when actions in the organization are preventing Raving Customer Fans from being secured.
Here’s the CSO Position Description:
> Create a Service Strategy for the organization.
> EXECUTE the Service Strategy.
> Be accountable for the results of the Service Strategy.
> Define Core Service for the firm and put in place the necessary tactics and program to deliver it at a satisfactory level 24X7.
> Re-engineer customer serving processes from the customer’s point of view.
> Strike the Dazzling Serving Recovery Strategy for your company. Recovering from your Serving Blunders builds loyalty. Its a critical piece of Strategy.
> Develop the ABSOLUTELY-MUST-HAVE-WILL-TAKE-NOTHING-LESS competencies of Frontline positions.
> Define the recruitment process to be used in bringing on Customer Servers.
> Empower the Frontline to bed the rules on the customer’s behalf.
> Insist that all leaders in the Serving Organization participate in 360 Degree Performance Feedback.
> Get the value of the Frontline Leader position re-valued in the organization to be THE MOST STRATEGIC POSITION EVER.
> Be the ultimate guardian of MOMENTS OF TRUTH with customers. Watch them. Evaluate them. Improve them. Coach. Coach. Coach.
> KILL DUMB RULES. The internal rules and policies that infuriate customers.
> Set up Dumb Rules Committees throughout the organization to seek out and cleanse the internal environment of stuff that makes no sense to customers.
> Be THE Advocate for the Frontline. Protect them. Nurture them. Celebrate with them. Help them. Be the Do-whatever-it-takes person to make sure they can delight customers.
> Set up Customer Feedback Panels to hear the truth about how you serve them. Get the CEO involved as well. The entire Executive Team. Leaders need to hear how your Serving is perceived.
> MEASURE. MEASURE. MEASURE. Analyze service results monthly. Take improvement action on shortfalls from objectives. Celebrate success. Honor people.
> Post Serving Results all over the place.
> Assume the role of Chief Storytelling Officer. Get out in front of people with stories that breathe life in the Service Strategy.
> Pay homage to Service Heroes. Know who they are and the names of their kids.
> Establish an Internal Serving Measurement System. Measure the quality of Serving provided among internal suppliers and customers.
These are STRATEGIC Acts that must be performed to BE DiFFERENT in Serving Customers and dominating your competition. Put a CSO in place to make it happen.
Dominate for Success
Caring is Strategic
Dazzling Service Recovery
The Customerized Organization Structure
Twenty Attributes of a BE DiFFERENT Leader
The Serving Customers Model
Serving Customers NOT Providing Customer Service
The Four Steps to Dazzle Customers
July 21, 2010
Another six personal traits that lead organizations to BE DiFFERENT...
> REACTION MANIAC —a HUGE aspect of surviving a major (or minor for that matter) screw-up is responding to what has occurred in the right (read as “Loyalty Building”) way. The truth is, a successful Recovery actually builds Customer Loyalty MORE than if the mistake never happened. Counter-intuitive I know, but true. Remember the BE DiFFERENT formula: Service Recovery = FIX it + Do the UNEXPECTED (the Dazzle Factor).
> MELLOW YELLOW —you really do need folks that react well under extreme pressure. See Competency above. STOP—PAUSE—THINK—RESPOND THOUGHTFULLY. This is tough to train people in (sometimes I think it is impossible). Covet the Competency.
> “I’LL REMEMBER YOU”—Memories….. the fact is a good memory will go a long way to dazzling a customer. It shows you paid attention the last time you connected with the person. It shows you care enough to remember. True story: this year’s vacation at the Maui Ocean Club in Kaanapali Maui. Mellisa greets us as we check in. First thing she says “Welcome home Mr. and Mrs. Osing. How are the book sales going? Have you written your second book yet?”. Impressive. Dazzling. A Memorable Moment for me. A story to tell.
> CONSTRUCTIVE EMULATOR—tough to come up with an original idea these days. Go find someone else’s idea that excites you. Morph it to work in your organization. Execute it with passion. Infect others with the Desire. A BE DiFFERENT copying skill is worth its weight in gold…. and survivability.
> NANO-INCH SEEKER—there’s no such thing as a Silver Bullet. Progress is made by having a distinguishing Strategic Game Plan and executing it flawlessly…. inch-by-inch-by-inch. Get an inch of progress FAST. Look for people who have demonstrated this capability.
> CUSTOMER EMPATHY—can you look at yourself through the customer’s eyes? No, I mean REALLY look. Objectively. Compassionately. Solution-mindedly. It’s not about your organization; it’s about the Customer Moment and you need Practising Empathizers if you want raving lunatic fans as customers (which we all do).
How are you doing? Out of the eighteen Competencies I have discussed so far, what percentage does your organization Covet? 100%—you’re dreaming! Over 50%—you’re on the right track and have the RIGHT momentum going. Less than 50%—you need a Competencies to Covet Plan (probably a renewed Strategic Game Plan to provide a new context for your organization should precede this).
As usual you comments would be appreciated. Your stories as well.
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July 14, 2010
Six more traits to acquire in your Competency Coveting journey:
> LIFELONG LEARNER—If you’re not learning you’re dead (or soon will be). Look for evidence that prospects have been active learners. What areas are they interested in? Who have they learned from? How can their learnings be put to use in your organization?
> INFECTION AGENT—the ability to “infect others” with the virus of your Strategic Game Plan is critical in terms of executing it. Some people have the interest, passion and tenacity to get others excited about advancing the cause. Find them!
> FRIEND-MAKING—deep customer relationships result in a revenue stream that goes on forever. Such connections depend on trust… and friendship.
> STORYTELLING—stories “breathe life” into a strategy. They paint pictures of what it looks like when a Strategic Game Plan is being successfully executed in the field. You need people who can “light their eyes up” with a story about some aspect of your strategy. Talk the event. Talk the person. Talk…..
> SIMPLE THINKER—BE DiFFERENT is simplicity. Execution is simplicity. Elegance that can’t be implemented is worthless. Think Simple. Find Simple. Dumb EVERYTHING down.
> @CONNECT—think about this one from an internal perspective. Results (i.e. delivering what the customer wants) are produced through processes working ACROSS the organization and vertically. A customer Order is created in Sales; fulfilled in Operations and billed in Accounting. A team of people engage together to get the job done. This requires the ability to CONNECT with others and build effective relationships with them. Service breakdowns often occur when a link in the teamwork chain breaks. Constant CONNECTIONS go a long way to avoiding such problems.
Hope you are enjoying my Ride to Covet. Let me know your views and any comments you may have.
More comin’ at ya….
Remember to follow me on Twitter
Other Competencies to Covet Blog Articles
First Six to Covet