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Updated by Jacque Opie on Jan 05, 2015
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Jacque Opie Jacque Opie
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Steps to creating a Customer Experience

Customer Service is important, but relies on your staff being in the right mood. A customer experience is a process that staff can follow to make sure your business has consistency around service and how they deal with your clients. Here are my hot tips for you.

Start with the end in mind.

Work out what do you want your customers to feel and say about you? Come up with a list of words that reflect your business vision and values. For example, if one of your business values is to have fun, then it makes sense that your customers are having fun. So when they talk to other people about your business, they will say, we had so much fun! Come up with at least 10 descriptive words or statements that you would like your customers to think and say about you.

How good is what you've got?

Mystery shopping is a great way to find out what an outsiders perspective is of your business. Get a professional to do it for you, and someone who understands what your vision is. Once they have carried out the mystery shopping for you, they should be able to make valuable recommendations on changes you can make in your business so that your customers in fact do end up saying what you want them say about your business. This will also help you in determining what training is required and what the gap is between what you want and what you have.

Involve your staff and customers from the beginning.

Your best advocates to drive any change within your business are working for you. If you ask them to get involved from day one, they are more likely to be on board with you. If you roll out a new strategy and have no input from them, this will make changes within the business a lot more challenging. Your customers are also your best advocates. Find out from them what they want. Ask them what they are saying about your business, and what they think about it currently. People love being involved, and they love to be asked. Once you know what your loyal customers already want from you, you will have a much better understanding of WHY they come to you, and you can improve those parts of your business.

Outline your Moments of Truth

A "Moment Of Truth" (M.O.T) is anytime that you come into contact with your customer, whether its face to face, email, phone etc. Sit down and document what each MOT is in your business so that you at that point you can make a decision about whether to keep it, change it, or dump it. Think about each MOT from the customers point of view. Does it add to the experience? Is it a waste of the customers time? Does it fit with our values? Can we do it better? Once you have this outlined, you can re-map your existing service to match what you want your customers to say about you.

Rinse and Repeat

Once you have started your new process for an uplifting customer experience, monitor the performance of your staff, survey your customers and make sure they LOVE it. If they don't, change it and do it fast. But a word of warning, if you are too fast to throw out the whole process, you may end up scraping something that could have been awesome, and only needed some minor tweaks. Be willing to adapt, take on feedback and learn.

Teach it, then do it!

Before rolling out your new processes, all staff need to be on board. This happens through effective training, and the chance for staff to air their concerns and talk openly about the new processes. Listen to their feedback, adapt if need be, and make sure that there are systems in place to support the changes. If its too hard for staff to do it, they won't. Offer on the job coaching, training and feedback before you introduce the systems to your customers. Remember, its better to "Sweat in training, than bleed in battle." This philosophy is related to roll plays! Once your staff have got it, roll it out to your customers. They can't wait to see what you have planned for them. Get the excitement bubbling by dropping hints to them, sharing it on Social Media, and creating a frenzy!

Celebrate your success

Staff desperately need to know what they are doing well right now. Tell them all the time. Tell them one on one, in groups, and through celebration. Acknowledge them for their efforts, input and patience. Enjoy this time with them.