"How can I get our employees more engaged in our customer experience efforts?" That question was raised in a networking meeting with about a dozen customer experience professionals from various companies in our local area. All agreed that it's a tough issue. After all, to really be effective with your CX programs you need to get people on-board.
To tackle the issue, each person at the meeting reviewed 10 cards, each listing a common obstacle to employee engagement and scored each one with a 1 (not a big deal), 2 (kind of a big deal), or 3 (definitely a big deal). In the same manner each person reviewed and scored a set of cards listing ideas for getting employees engaged using the same 1 – 2 – 3 scoring system.
After calculating the scores, here's how our group ratings came out:
TOP OBSTACLES TO EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT:
- Employees hear about focusing on the customer but don't really know what they are supposed to do.
- Employees don't see how customer experience initiatives connect to their role in the company.
- The company is more focused on something other than customers – such as products, sales, or productivity.
- Employees are simply unaware that customer experience initiatives exist.
- Employees know about customer initiatives but don't really understand the goals of the program.
TOP IDEAS TO BUILD EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT:
- Promote your CX initiatives – come up with a name or "brand" so that it stands out.
- Make sure customer issues are on all meeting agendas, particularly ones with broad exposure.
- Distribute customer comments so employees can understand customers in their own words.
- Conduct customer "ride-alongs" or shadow customers to understand their perspective.
- Share journey maps to communicate what a customer experiences.
Can you relate with the obstacles listed? Have you tried some of these ideas? While every company is unique and has various levels of customer-centricity, its safe to say that we all need to work hard to engage our employees in our customer experience strategies.