CX Skills Builder: How to articulate your CX Value and secure your budget
Two weeks ago we urged you to find CX problems and fix them instead of diagnosing and mapping them. That is the right strategy when you are building buy in with the operation and when you are acting as a customer experience evangelist in your organization. It is necessary so you can have the right content for your business case and funding requests.
To fix more impactful, systemic customer experience inefficiencies you need real money and executive buy in. To obtain that, you must articulate your value to your senior leadership. Often, this is where all CX efforts stop. That is a shame because, if you have a seat at that table, that means your executives WANT to give you the money. They just need you to seal the deal, to walk them through the value prop for their shareholders.
But you fail at articulating your value. Why?
You cannot articulate something you don’t know. The first roadblock for CX professionals is not going into the details enough. When faced with good questions from executives you are unable to answer them and unable to fight for that critical buy in.
To sell better customer experience, first clearly communicate how bad the current experience is and what the business impact of the bad experience is. Note that the harm to the business needs to be significant enough for your leaders to CARE. The level of negative impact must correspond to the level of investment you are requesting. For example, if you ask for funding to fix the recovery experience for your customers, but that only impacts 1% of your total customers, you may have to find a cheaper way to do what you want. In essence, all you are arguing is that you MAY increase the retention of SOME of the people in this 1%.
On the other hand, you could take the next steps and chase your company’s operational and reputation risks. You can claim that, if the problem is not fixed and the company grows, experience disruptions will go on for much longer and will cost the company more and put your reputation at greater risk. With this approach, you have a shot at getting real money from executives for CX.
To succeed, think broadly.
Contrary to popular belief among CX professionals, you don’t only need to know the details of the business impact of your customer experience program. You also need to know HOW you will spend the money. The details of the spend. When some CX leaders are asked how they will actually build the solutions they are seeking to fund, they answer “that is for IT to answer” or “most of it is IT.” These vague responses do not instill the confidence that you are knowledgeable enough to control the dollar spent once it is given to you.
As CX professionals, we all need to become more familiar and comfortable with the IT language and the IT world. Whether you like it or no, we are all becoming IT specialists too (just like IT professionals have a CX role). That does not mean you need to learn coding. It does mean you need to understand what data storage is and how much it costs, where IT Security sits and when you need them to approve your project, or how to look at and approve wireframes.
Last, but not least, a successful CX leader has control over the financial projections and management spend. Ideally, your finance group will be diligent and track your spend in real time. In reality, that rarely happens. You are the one who benefits from knowing where your money is going and if the rate of spend is matching the rate of product delivery. If you are told that 60% of your capital funding is spend and you are “on track” the first question to ask is have you build 60% of the deliverables? Are all the big ticket items allocated evenly, or is there a big bill that will come at the last minute and push you over budget?
If you don’t ask those questions, no one will. Even worse, your senior leaders will ask you and you will not know the answers. In general, you gain more credibility with your executives if you present comprehensive monthly financial reports, than if you are silent for the duration of your CX project and as surprised as your leaders are by the financial health of your portfolio at project end.
Use your CX skills to lead
This is the last piece of our CX Skills Builders series. The theme in throughout is to take action and to own your work. Too many people work hard and waste energy on the wrong things. Focus on results, acknowledge true Customer Experience roles, and think about what your company’s investment is fixing (or not) through the lens of your customer. If you follow these simple steps you will be a successful CX professional who can lead the way for the future.
Enhance Your CX Skills
Become a Member of The Petrova Experience.
Healthcare Culture Change Whitepaper: Impact of Patient ‘I Wants’ in Healthcare
Rachel Dreyfus joins The Petrova Experience with a guest blog about healthcare customer experience. Background A culture of positive patient experience is increasingly important in Healthcare, affecting patient outcomes and…
Is Covid19 What We Needed to Build Seamless End-to-End Travel Experience?
On January 10th, we published an article called The Future of Travel We Deserve. In it, we laid out the foundation necessary to implement innovation at scale. Four months later,…
Leadership During the Pandemic: Guest Post by Rachel Dreyfus
This is a guest post by Rachel Dreyfus, President, Dreyfus Advisors, who researched leadership during the pandemic. How has Covid19 influenced leadership over the past three months? Research results show…
Employee Experience and Customer Experience Depend on Strategy
This week, Andy Newman wrote a great article in The New York Times about the life of a retail sales agent. He used the example of an Old Navy sales…
Liliana Petrova Talks Patient Experience on Healthcare Podcast
Today we share with you a recent healthcare podcast we recorded with Stacey Richter. I was very excited to have the opportunity to discuss with her the similarities between the…
Customer Experience Design – How Do You Want Customers To Feel?
Last week, we talked about CX Design in terms of space and function. Today, we continue our CX design journey to talk about the design of emotions and feelings. The new…
4 Career Tips to obtain a Customer Experience Role
In honor of the 4th of July, we are rounding up 4 career tips for CX professionals. Set aside some time during the break from work to take stock in your CX career and evaluate the steps you need to get to the next level.
Customer Experience Design – Make the Customer Know Who You Are
Now that we have helped you become experts in the design of space and function and the design of feelings, it is time to turn our attention to aesthetics, and to connect customer experience…
The One CX Goal You Need to Set for 2019
For 2019, I urge you to make only one CX goal – bring about business success with your customer experience work. Don’t just do work in the general sense. Rather, set a CX goal that has a real impact on your customers and their experiences with your brand.
Coronavirus Travel: What Does Hospitality Mean Now?
Earlier this week, I traveled to New Orleans from JFK Terminal 5 in New York. I had planned an airport conference a few months ago. Although many colleagues chose not…
Hiring Tips: Who Should I Hire First on My CX Team
The pressure to demonstrate business impact and ROI on your Customer Experience initiatives quickly makes your first hire even more important. As usual, there is no answer that fits all scenarios perfectly. We have some helpful strategies to consider based on the structure of your organization and your goals.
Create Your Tribe: How Great CX Makes a Lifestyle Brand
Newcomers to the market realize that their business is only as strong as the growth of their customer base. With that in mind, senior leaders work hard to shorten the distance between them and the customer.
How to Be an Entrepreneur: 5 Things I Learned in 5 Months as an Entrepreneur
The life of an entrepreneur is different every day, but the one thing that remains the same is that we are always learning. These are my lessons in how to…
How to Prepare for AI: Dispatches from CR Summit, Charleston
On the eve of the #CRSummit in Charleston, customer experience leaders from various industries held the first AI Committee meeting. AI is a challenging topic to cover because it has…
Customer Experience Audit: Uber Bets On Self-Driving Cars With Big Volvo Purchase
The question that remains unanswered is who will be part of the future of transportation. Uber is going for the vertical integration – the whole pie. The future industry of urban transportation will be made of players in three different categories: cars, self-driving software, and ride-sharing network. In contrast, Lyft approaches the future through partnerships.
CX Bold Moves: JetBlue Paperless And Deviceless Boarding
Editor’s Note: This post is part of a series of CX Bold Moves. See all the CX Bold Moves stories. This year JetBlue entered the ranks of the innovators who…
How a Personal Interaction builds Customer Loyalty
A customer-centric methodology is key to the successful outcome of my interaction with Hello Spud. It is the reason this story appears here, and not among the CX Big Fails! The company did not send an automated response. It did not deliver a message stating “sorry we couldn’t help you, would you like something else.” Instead, the company co-founder reached out to me personally across multiple channels (a handwritten note, followed by personal emails).
What is Customer Experience? What are the Faces of CX?
Each area of CX represents a path for CX professionals to impact business health and build successful careers. One of my favorite CX analogies is that it is like the blood in our bodies. When CX is done well, it touches every aspect of an organization. That’s what makes customer experience so much fun! You will never be bored working in CX.
Are You Ready to Go Exclusive with Jane, Your Digital Concierge?
In 2015 JetBlue introduced bag fees. Seven years after the competition. The media exploded. Many publications were negative. They blamed the airline for “selling out.” One headline read “A New…
Customer Experience Audit: Cadillac Scores Millennial Customers with Future-Forward Thinking
Editor’s Note: This post is part of a series of Customer Experience Audits. See all the audit stories. The automotive industry is right next to the airline industry in terms…
Lessons Learned at the Forrester Conference: “Data is the New Sexy”
Once a year I look for an event or a conference to attend where I can learn something new and get better at what I do. This year I attended…
Why You Need Culture Not Call Center Training for Customer-Centric CX
If the organization does not understand what customer experience is, you will not get the funding or organizational support you need to build customer-centric experiences.
Do You Know Why The Iconic Brand Toys ‘R’ Us Closed Doors Despite All Our Memories? #RetailBlues
The year is 2016. You are the CEO of Toys ‘R’ Us. Your brand still controls 13.6% of the toy market although the company is highly leveraged, a strategy of…
How To Define Your Purpose And Have Unique Culture
If you Google the word “purpose” you get the definition “the reason for which something exists.” This is a challenge if you think about it in the context of an…
How to talk to your CFO about customer experience and revenue growth
Last month we introduced the topic of Customer Experience ROI and the complexity of building a good business case for it. The Customer Experience business case is strong, but not easy to prove. Today we will focus on two big wins of a successful customer experience investment – revenue and customer growth of your business.
Let’s Get You Certified as a Customer Experience Professional!
Like all mature professions, customer experience has a certification that is internationally recognized. Adding it to your resume will signal to the business community that you are serious about customer experience and your aspiration to be part of its leadership ranks…
Culture and Access to Information
By and large, people perceive culture as an HR discipline. The most common perception is that culture covers the soft side of performance. Culture is about how you do things, not so much about what you do. This approach to culture could not be more wrong. In fact, organizational culture is about so much more than a few words in a performance review sheet. It is about leaders expressing values, and the action guidance their cultural behaviors provide.
Why Customers Are Not Responding to Your Customer Experience Survey
When you solicit customer feedback sometimes matters more than how you ask the questions. In the case of a survey about new biometrics boarding initiatives my team and I created for JetBlue, we had a list of feedback that was most important for us.
United CEO does not care about #customers happiness. Really?
Lately, I have been thinking about United Airlines. In the beginning I was thinking about them, because I was asked if it is possible to build a customer-centric culture in…
Customer Experience Lessons for Freelancers: To Grow Your Client Base, Add Your Personal Touch
For small businesses and freelancers alike, it’s important to recognize that your business is as strong as the relationships you build with your customers. We can learn a lot about…
Would You Pitch In To Save Toys “R” Us For Your Children To Experience? #ToysRUsGoFundMe
Last week we laid out the big moves that the leadership of Toys ‘R’ Us failed to take to evolve with customer needs. This week, billionaire Isaac Larian set up a GoFundMe…
How Not to Leave Customers Stranded on the Busiest Travel Day of the Year
Meet Diane. She is traveling with her 2 year old and 5 year old to her in-laws’ house for Thanksgiving. This is the one annual trip she has to take….
3 Ways to Get Started Creating Better Employee Experience
Guest Post by Gabe Smith, CCXP The relationship between employee experience and customer experience has long been discussed. Without engaged employees, we’re told, it’s difficult to create great experiences for…
Customer Experience, Self Service, and the Gift of Time
Time is the most precious gift in life. If you think about it, time is the one thing we all want more of. As we get older and busier, time gets even more valuable to us.
How @T4 makes real customer experience impact on travelers experience
Today we share our impressions from visiting our welcoming host Chad at JFK Terminal 4 in NYC. We also celebrate Chad as an effective Customer Experience professional/practitioner. His work is…
Autonomous Customers, Traveler Privacy and More Questions for CX Professionals in a Changing World
“As we move toward a more automated culture, most travelers will adapt to a Jetsonian, automated lifestyle. Every industry we know will be disrupted. For those of us in aviation,…
Our Holiday Wishes for Great CX
Every successful customer experience initiative starts with a skilled CX team. Brush up on your CX skills to strengthen the business case for CX; to develop relationships within your organization; and to deliver standout customer experiences in the new year.
Customer Experience Audit: Domino’s Making the Right CX Choices
Editor’s Note: This post is part of a series of Customer Experience Audit. See all CX audit stories. Domino’s Pizza made two CX bold moves . They changed a nearly half-century…
The Importance of Wellness In The Workplace: Guest Post
Today, The Petrova Experience brings you a guest article by Natlie DeVito of Commonwealth Joe. Commonwealth Joe is an innovative company, new to the New York City market, that offers…
Culture Is King – The Power Of Employee Engagement
In 2017 we introduced our ROI series recognizing the challenges all customer experience professionals have to obtain funding for CX initiatives and to prove their positive returns. Our second ROI…
Customer Experience Tips and Best Practices In 2017?
In Post 2 of Liliana Petrova’s series on customer experience tips, lessons learned, and best practices for the new year on JetBlue, she explores the importance of “keeping the human…
Customer Experience View of your Call Center Technology
By 2022 the global cloud based contact center market is growing from USD 6.8Bn in 2017 to 20.93Bn in 2022. This makes for CAGR of 25.2%. If you do not…
Why you need a defined culture to do CX right?
When designed and built correctly, customer experience expresses an organization’s brand. Your brand and marketing promises serve as a guiding light to your experience team. Similarly, organizational culture serves as a goalpost for the service side of customer experience.
CX Design Makes Form and Function Beautiful – and Cosmopolitan Magazine Notices
At its core, design is about value creation. In the world of Customer Experience, value-driven design requires CX professionals to use empathy to imagine a future customer experience that is…