Action is the often elusive, prized component to any voice of the customer program. And, one of the keys to action is training. It makes sense — you have great customer insights, but nobody is going to apply them to the business unless you show them how.
Training is particularly useful with your customer facing employees. But beware the following scenario:
You assemble all your account managers and develop a great training session. They get it. The light bulb turns on! They understand the benefits of being customer focused and realize customer loyalty can drive business performance. You review the reports they will receive and they love them. By the end of the session they all recognize they can make better decisions and can improve the way they manage customer relationships.
(okay, this sounds too easy, but just play along for now)
The energy is high and you feel as though you have really broken through – your plan is working. Your training session is done and you chalk it up as a success!
Not so fast.
Reality will quickly set in. You will find that by the time they get back to their office, they are buried in other details. You’ll find that not everyone was able to attend. There will be turnover and new people will need to be trained. In other words, to really make your training session successful, you better start a list of all the ways to follow up.
It’s true of any training — You can’t expect people to change their habits without constant reinforcement and repetition. At some point, with luck and hard work, it can become routine.
So, if you conduct trainings for your customer listening program, start your list and recognize that the real work starts after you have finished your session.