Topic: Customer Experience
Summary: When silos rule, internal communications break down and it’s difficult to present a united vision, brand and compelling message to consumers. However, some innovators are redefining cross-functional integration and alignment.
How GE is Redefining “Communications ”
GE Vice President and Chief Communications Officer Deirdre Latour noted (in regards to the company’s restructuring) that there is “no longer a divide between internal and external communications.”
Latour commented how the company has fused its total communications, “We view communications as completely boundaryless. There are no internal communications and external communications.” The company uses a system they call “go direct” to, as Latour notes, “build a direct communications program using data, that allows us to speak directly to [all] people and …communicate with those who care most about GE.”
How Cross-Functional Alignment Is Growing Tumi
Luggage company Tumi has learned that cross-functional alignment to help the brand grow “beyond incrementally” helped boost effective customer engagement and drive growth. Following are cross-functional insights from Charlie Cole, Chief Digital Officer at Tumi,
Research Shows Cross Functionality Fuels Superior CX
McKinsey & Co. noted that in order to build better consumer communication, brands need to fix their internal communication.
Their insights indicate that brands need to “better organize and mobilize employees around consumer needs.” Additionally, they note that “designing the customer experience entails…reorienting company cultures.”
And that, “rewiring a company to provide leading customer experience is a journey in itself… requiring high engagement from company leaders and frontline workers alike… it takes patience and guts to train an organization to see the world through the customer’s eyes and to redesign functions to create value in a customer-centric way.” But here is their caution: “Too many companies focus on individual interaction touchpoints…”
The company noted that there is a distinct difference between a single touchpoint and a total journey, noting that “…customer satisfaction … is 73 percent more likely when journeys work well than when only touchpoints do.” And that building this journey “…must be made clear to every employee through a simple, crisp statement of intent: a shared vision and aspiration that’s authentic and consistent…” And, that journeys should be, “the framework that allows a company to organize itself and mobilize employees to deliver value…”
Pontish Yeramyan, founder and CEO of performance consulting firm Gap International, noted on the breakdown of interdepartmental communication, “When.. department or function becomes the most important thing, they lose perspective of the bigger outcome.” Brands need to break the cycle of tunnel vision to embrace wide-scoping, all-encompassing thinking in order to provide the type of consistent, well-rounded consumer experiences that build relationships and thereby sales and loyalty.
About the Author:
Ernan Roman Direct Marketing’s Customer Experience strategies achieve consistent double-digit increases in response and revenue for their clients, which include IBM, MassMutual, QVC, Microsoft, and Symantec Corp.
As a leader in providing Voice of Customer research-based guidance, ERDM has conducted over 10,000 hours of interviews with their clients’ customers and prospects, to gain an in-depth understanding of their expectations for high-value relationships.
The results achieved by ERDM’s VoC-based strategies earned Ernan Roman induction into the Marketing Hall of Fame.
Visit his blog at: http://ernanroman.blogspot.com/