By: Randy Wolken, President & CEO
Every industry is being transformed by the expectations of customers. Manufacturing is no different. Price and product were the reasons companies were successful in the past. Today, the customer experience is driving the focus of company efforts.
We are all consumers. When you are the buyer, what are you looking for today? I look hard at the customer experience. Is it easy to understand the product? Is it easy to order? Can I get it quickly? What are my “hassles” in buying from the provider? These are all critical questions. They are the same questions being asked by your customers and our members.
Consumers today have higher expectations than ever, and the businesses that can provide them with the most seamless and positive experiences will be the most successful. According to a study by Walker, customer experience is predicted to overtake price and product as the key brand differentiator by 2020. * This change needs to drive what leaders focus on.
As leaders, we must help our teams see the value of creating an outstanding customer experience. A great customer experience increases loyalty and profitability. This is also true for our own staff. When they have a meaningful experience, they are more loyal to the company and work harder making our organizations more viable and profitable. An organization must become outstanding at creating memorable and meaningful experiences tied to our products and services. Our customers will remember how we made them feel. Increasingly, it is what will allow us to win and keep our customers.
Recently, MACNY hosted our Council Kickoff event for council members and individual members at Empire Farm Brewery. It was a “wow” event! Over 120 people attended to learn more about our events for the year, eat great food, and drink great locally brewed beer. The participants also got a tour of the brewery by the owner and founder. What a great experience! This kind of event leaves people with a great feeling. Customer experience is a key focus at MACNY and guides all of our nearly 300 events a year. We want our members leaving saying, “Wow – I want to do that again!” I want everyone at MACNY to be a CEO – Chief Experiences Officer.
As a leader, what are you doing to model approaches to creating great experiences? How are you encouraging your team to reach for “wow” levels of service over just “average”? How can you learn more about analyzing your customer interactions and significantly improving them? These questions can be a good starting point for us as leaders and for our teams.
Looking for more? Download my Amazon Bestseller, Present-Future Leader: How to Thrive in Today’s Economy.