Roy's Blog

July 26, 2010

Do your customers have a Chief at the executive table?

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 both core service and 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:

1. Create and execute the service strategy for the organization.

2. Re-engineer customer serving processes from the customer’s point of view.

3. Develop the ABSOLUTELY-MUST-HAVE-WILL-TAKE-NOTHING-LESS competencies of frontline positions.

4. Define the recruitment process to be used in bringing on Customer Servers.

5. Get the value of the frontline leader position re-valued in the organization to be THE MOST STRATEGIC POSITION EVER.

6. Be the ultimate guardian of customer moments of truth. Watch them. Evaluate them. Improve them. Coach. Coach. Coach.

7. Kill dumb rules - the internal rules and policies that infuriate customers.

8. Set up dumb rules committees throughout the organization to seek out and cleanse the internal environment of stuff that makes no sense to customers.

9. 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.

10. 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.

11. Assume the role of Chief Storytelling Officer. Get out in front of people with stories that breathe life in the service strategy.

12. Pay homage to service heroes. Know who they are and the names of their kids.

These are STRATEGIC Acts that must be performed to stand-out in the way you serve your customers.

Put a CSO in place to make it happen.

Cheers, Roy

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  • Posted 7.26.10 at 12:00 pm by Roy Osing
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