A few months ago I wrote this post on Walker's Hierarchy of Engagement. In it I made the case that employees who truly believe that customer-focused action makes a difference are at the pinnacle of the hierarchy. These are true customer advocates.
I've recently been thinking more about this concept, especially the importance of belief before action. There are two important reasons to focus on building employee belief in your customer experience program:
- It makes employees more likely to engage in customer-focused action.
- It results in actions that are more consistent, creative, and impactful.
An employee who believes in the information and strategies coming out of your customer experience program is more likely to take actions that are consistent with your customer strategy and are seen as authentic and valuable by the customer.
Getting employees to believe in your program takes more than just presenting information in a rational way or linking voice of customer data to business outcomes that matter to them. Employees need to believe that it is worth their time to change behaviors, thought processes, etc, which is what we are ultimately asking them to do. The best way to accomplish this is to evangelize your program. You need people who are out there meeting with employees and convincing them to make these changes. Having senior leaders spreading this message from the top adds much needed credibility to your message, but ultimately it will be the smaller touch that is necessary for converting many employees from hollow action, to self-motivated, passionate customer focus.