Dream customer experience team – the “starting five”

Dec 15, 2021 | Blog

Forrester recently shared 2022 predictions about customer experience. One of the predictions was: Customers will Want Over Half of the Pandemic-Era Services to Become the “New Normal”. As an example, one-half to two-thirds of the US and European consumers say that the pandemic has changed how they shop for products. Consumers are also suffering from digital saturation, putting pressure on companies to manage increasingly hybrid customer experiences across physical and digital touchpoints that require connected data, ecosystem thinking, and orchestration of customer, employee and partner journeys. Adapting to the new normal requires a strong CX team in the organizations. So in this blog article, we recommend you a “starting five” for your CX team to become a winner.

  • Analyst: The Analyst is responsible for delivering, highlighting and sharing key data that pinpoint Net Promoter Score® (NPS), Customer Effort Score (CES) and other CX metrics on a regular basis. In addition, they should break down these scores and be able to explain how and why they are going up, down or staying the same. Knowing where these numbers are at all times, and having an explanation as to why they might be changing, is the foundation for your team’s ability to making beneficial changes to the business.
  • CX Evangelist: Another crucial member to any CX Dream Team is the CX Evangelist. This team member will be critical in selling your CX program across the organization. Passionate and articulate, this person has a strong pulse on who needs to be influenced, and oftentimes convinced, that CX is worth investing in.
  • Service Designer: The next critical member of the CX Dream Team is the Design Thinker. By having a high-level, strategic thinker on your team, you can stay one-step ahead to make sure your program produces real results. And this is more than just designing great surveys (though this is important). It’s about creative thinking around areas like how to talk to people and finding creative ways to address business challenges.
  • Structural Thinker: Closing the loop is the most critical step in customer voice programs. It is very important to approach the issue structurally and to use continuous improvement methods in order to turn the customer’s voice into action. At this point, you will need people who will approach the subject with the 6-sigma philosophy and have the competence to improve the processes from end to end.
  • Entrepreneur: Finally, we come to the Entrepreneur. This is your business-savvy team member who gets things done. This person has elements of the other four team players, but wraps solid CX expertise in real business acumen. They understand what delivers results, and how to make that happen. This is vital in ensuring that all the great CX ideals and ideas are translated into action.

Final thoughts; as companies continue to focus on customer experience in the organizations, teams will start putting more and more emphasis on the specific players they need in place to be successful. As CX teams engage across the wider company, you should build your strongest CX team by bringing in people who complement one another.

With the right blend of skills, approaches and experience, there is no stopping the CX Dream Team.


5 Rules for building a successful customer experience team

My global Customer Experience consultancy, Beyond Philosophy, has been recognized by Financial Times as one of the leading management consultancy organizations for the past three years. People have asked me how I did it, to which I quickly reply, “loads of bribery.” However, the truth is I built an excellent team. So, today, we will look at the 5 Rules for building a successful Customer Experience team. 

The five rules for building a successful customer experience team:

  1. Employ people who are good at strategic thinking but who are practical doers. 
  2. Build a team with a high EQ or emotional intelligence.
  3. Have respect for cross-silo understanding. 
  4. Find people who can deal with conflict but with integrity.
  5. Employ people with natural communication skills. 

Rule #1: Employ people who are good at strategic thinking but who are practical doers. 

Thinking strategically is essential to your Customer Experience team. The strategy encompasses tasks like determining the experience you want to deliver, what emotions you want to evoke, understanding the organization’s direction, and each area’s profitability, and so on. 

However, it is also essential to have people that can put these ideas into motion and do something. This area is where many organizations have problems. They employ clever people to make the plan but don’t have practical people to pick it up and carry out the plan. People in high-level positions can lose touch and intellectualize everything. Unfortunately, the intellectual approach doesn’t always work in the real world without modification. A great idea that is impractical to implement is useless. It would be best to have a team with complementary skills to make a fantastic organization. 

Rule #2: Build a team with a high EQ or emotional intelligence.

There are two forms of intelligence. First, there’s how quickly you can process data, which we call IQ. Then, there is emotional intelligence, or EQ, which is an idea based on a book by the same name by Daniel Goleman. Goleman says that it is a form of intelligence to understand how you and other people feel and manage those emotions. Both forms of intelligence are essential. However, the person with the highest IQ isn’t necessarily the best leader. Often, the best leader is the person with the ability to get on with people and understand how emotions play into the team. Also, the ability to read people allows them to understand customer emotions.

Often we think of intelligence narrowly in terms of memory for facts or ability to do mathematics or some of these other things. Some artistic talents and emotional intelligence can get overlooked or underappreciated. One of the keys to good leadership is being sensitive to other peoples’ needs.

Rule #3: Have respect for cross-silo understanding

When you’re trying to build a successful team, you want those team members to understand the perspective of several departments in the organization. For example, if you have only worked in marketing, you likely appreciate the view of the marketing team. Still, you do not understand other perspectives, like customer service or human resources teams’. Without that understanding, the people in those departments will not be as open to you as someone who understood their view of the organization from their various departmental silos. Understanding those crossover points between departments is often underestimated also. A problem area from the Customer Experience perspective results from the lack of good handover between those groups. Another problem area is the lack of understanding of the value chains in each of those departments. A person who has that experience will improve those handovers. They can also recognize the problems changes in Customer Experience cause people and fix them for the people involved. 

The best Customer Experience plan in the world will fail unless you have the key stakeholders within an organization on board. So, you need to recruit multiple people from various points within the organization to support the plan and get it off the ground. Without that support, your project is not going anywhere. 

Rule #4: Find people who can deal with conflict but with integrity.

Conflict is an unfortunate byproduct of improving the Customer Experience. People don’t like change. I always put it this way, “everyone’s happy until you ask them to do something.” From a Customer Experience perspective, that means everyone is happy about drawing up strategic ideas on whiteboards, but when it comes down to making change, that’s when their hackles rise.

The Customer Experience team must be able to deal with that conflict. However, they must also be able to do so without giving the impression that they have a plan outside of what is best for the customer.

Please note that I didn’t say they reduce conflict or avoid conflict. If you try that, the battle will just come out in an unhealthy way, like a plan for sabotage or creating a toxic work environment. If you have the conflict out in the open, then it can be resolved. Even if everyone is not happy with it, everyone at least understands and respects the decision. Stomping your foot and smashing down any opposition will not have good results in the long run.

Rule #5: Employ people with natural communication skills. 

Communication is essential, particularly in a role like Customer Experience. However, it is also vital how they talk about things to people. Your Customer Experience team should be able to speak at a senior level and a shop-floor level. Sometimes people with a high IQ have a hard time simplifying things for people. Unfortunately, that makes it hard for people to understand them and puts a wedge in the communication. I used to tell one intellectual member of my team to explain it to me like he would his mates down at the pub. He did, but it still took two or three times before I understood (which might have been my problem, not his). The ability to simplify the complex for people is a fundamental skill and enables communication in the organization. 

Telling stories is another way to enable excellent communication. If you can draw a parallel by telling somebody an anecdote or draw a parallel with a real-world example, it brings the concept down to earth. For example, one of the things we do in training is to have the participants bring examples of good Customer Experiences. Then we break down those experiences and show our participants how to use them in the organization’s new Customer Experience plan. We find that this exercise makes the concepts of customer-centric Customer Experience “real” for them.

Original link:  https://beyondphilosophy.com/5-rules-for-building-a-successful-customer-experience-team-2/


 With increasing competition across industries, it is more important to understand what customers are thinking about the products and/or services provided by companies.
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