I am a high net worth customer with T-Mobile – not me bragging but them telling me themselves. I have been with them for 10 years, have two phones and mobile broadband with them and spend in excess of £2,000 per annum.
One issue I always have with my phones is Am I on the right package? My circumstances changed last year and I found myself travelling in Europe significantly and consequently my bills rose. In the good old days T-Mobile used to call me regularly if I was on the wrong tariff and advise me to change. Obviously they have grown and nice touches like this cannot continue, but I have to ring them once a quarter due to handset related issues and there would be a perfect opportunity to have a chat about my tariff and see if they could do something to keep me a happy customer. I was wrong.
Furthermore, my last few handsets (all Blackberry’s) had a habit of suffering dying battery syndrome around 14 months into my contract (one was as short as 1 month in). In these situations I could send the phone away to be repaired, and thus be without my handset for up to 10 days, or try and buy a new battery. Now I do not see why I should suffer – if the contract is for 18 months then the phone should be fit for purpose for that period and I should receive a replacement if during the contract the old one develops a malfunction.
Thirdly, I was aware that for customers who spent alot, T-Mobile could source iPhones at upgrade time. So I went online and sent them an email. I was told “wait until 25th January 2010”. Fine but my battery was dying rather rapidly in November time so when I logged in to download my bill I saw I could claim my upgrade. So I rang T-Mobile and was told “sorry we do not do iPhones anymore”. Great, so I simply upgraded online and got a new Blackberry, and very nice it is.
Last week I saw my bills were at an all time high and that when I tried to use the internet abroad I was now being asked to buy “Euro Boosters” – this was not part of my contract I was sure so rang T-Mobile. And so began the torture.
Apparently nothing can be done to bring my bills down apart from:-
- Send picture messages instead of text messages as these are cheaper
- Turn off my voicemail when I am abroad
Great advice as I use my phone for work and prospective clients would find a picture message of me giving them a thumbs up really professional.
I then asked about the iPhone and was told that they do do them and if I would have waited until 25th January as per their email I could have had one. This apparently is became they have an “early upgrade date” and a “full upgrade date”. Obviously the website makes this clear – oh no it doesn’t as apparently “it is a busy website with other 17 million users and they can’t put everything up there”. So when I rang and was told “no iPhones” what I was supposed to understand was “dont upgrade today but wait until an expiry date that we have never told you about”.
T-Mobile are adamant that this is a clear way of doing business. They also say that there is nothing they can do. In fact when I said that I could go onto a comparison site and put my bill details in and see what deals were out there for say O2 for example they aid “so why did you renew your contract with us in November”. Now that is what I call a great customer experience and something that Twitter was invented for!
“Always remember the magic begins with you”
Service Disney Style
11 Theme parks
3,951 Hotel Rooms
3 Cruise Ships
1,331 Retail Shops
10 TV Stations
2 Internet Portals
Corporate Revenu growth averages 16% over past 15 years
Largest single site employer in USA – 55,000 “cast members”
70% of visitors are returning ones
WHY? – Success breeds compeition and customer satisfaction is an ever movable target, and so there has to be a complete focus on the Guest Experience
The Quality Service Cycle dominates all thinking. Exceeding expectations = paying attention to detail. Disney have a phrase called “Bumping the lamp” which comes from the film Who Framed Roger Rabbit when it was essential that when a cartoon drawing bumped into a real object that the object reacted in a way as if he was a real character. This is the mission statement the whole management team live by – for instance there are never more than 27 feet between litter bins in any of the parks as this is the maximum distance someone will walk to put litter in one.
“A team is as strong as the relationships within it. The driving force within the team is its members ability to create and maintain excellent relationships with the team that can add an extra dimension and robustness to the team dynamic.”
This attitude can be used by the team to focus on the gratitude and vitally important benefits that the teams bring to their own lives. It can be used to strengthen and deepen the relationships within it and maximise the opportunities that await a strong and united team.
– Displaying a Positive Attitude on and off the pitch
– Everyone making the right decisions for the team
– Having an unshakeable belief that we can achieve our targets
– Believe is the strength of the team
– Always want more and always give more
– Focus on communication at all time
– Be demanding of yourself
– Be fresh and prepared to win
– Focus on being mentally stronger and always keep going until the end
– Stay grounded and humble as a person
– Show the desire to win in all that you do
– Enjoy and contribute to all that is special about being in a team, and never take it for granted.
1. Only relying on Magic Numbers
Too much reliance on magic numbers such as KPI’s, metrics and reports that measure useless information will give a false impression of your business and waste everyone’s time. The need to model the processes from the customer perspective is key and this SHOULD lead to understanding through research and feedback as to what happens throughout the whole Customer Experience process
2. We do not listen
We need to break down our propositions and services so that we can listen to what our customers are saying and use the comments as part of our brand building.
3. Measuring word of mouth is hard
Youtube, tripadvisor, hostingreview are becoming the 1st port of call in the buying process for many new customers now.
4. Too much functional data with too little insight
We should look at unifying all research and analysis with a voice of the customer programme. Standardising Customer Experience feedback is the major starting point.
5. We don’t look beyond the obvious and superficial
Measuring benefits and not service levels is absolutely key
Taken from the book by Colin Shaw – Building Great Customer Experiences – http://www.amazon.co.uk/Building-Great-Customer-Experiences-Colin/dp/1403939497/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1226442520&sr=8-2
Every action should be put together with DICE in mind:-
“There is no substitute for having the best product”
A company with a price advantage can be undercut, a company with a performance advantage can be outflanked but a company with an emotional difference can potentially demand a price premium for ever.
Seven clear philosophies to building this premium offering.
One – Great Customer Experience is a source of long term competitive advantage
Revenue follows loyalty and not the other way around
Two – Great Customer Experiences are created by consistently exceeding customers’ physical and emotional expectations
You need to understand how expectations are built and what is the best way to influence the change in perception
Three – Great Customer Experiences are differentiated by focusing on stimulating planned emotions
Emotions are a major differentiator and are the most underestimated asset available to businesses today. They can be used to put colour back in our grey world. People buy with emotion and justify with logic.
Four – Great Customer Experiences are enabled through inspirational leadership, an empowering culture and empathetic people who are happy and fulfilled in their roles
The wrong company culture can cause a poor bland experience for customers. People mimic what leaders say and do. They need to spend time at the frontline and talk to customers. The cultures has to be Defined, Designed, Aligned, Signed and Mine.
Five – Great Customer Experiences are designed “outside in” rather than the other way round
The simpler the business model, the simpler the customer experience is to control. Lack of ownership of issues and keeping “deep staff” away from customers is a poor design. Bumping the lamp or attention to detail is key
Six – Great Customer Experiences are revenue generating and can significantly reduce costs
Customer Churn is reduced as overlaps and the cost of failures are reduced as resources are in the right place.
Seven – Great Customer Experiences are the embodiment of the brand
Customer Experience is your brand coming to life
Leadership = Positive Influence
Leaders have certain key characteristics
- They believe that they can positively shape their lives and careers
- They lead through their relationships and networks
- They collaborate not control
- They persuade not order
- The get others to follow through respect and commitment
- Believes that titles mean nothing – influence and inspiration come from the person not the position
“An army of deer led by a lion is more fearful that an army of lions led by a deer” Philip of Macedonia
Customer service is about doing what you are supposed to help the customer. Customer Leadership is about going above and beyond that.