Customer Experience Professionals Ghana
 
Love as a Strategy

Love as a Strategy

Anyone close to me, knows I’m a sucker for love. I am that sappy woman who ‘awwws’ and ‘ooohs’ at ALL the romantic scenes in a movie. Ask me to plan a romantic gesture for your loved one and I will jump off my sick bed. Who knows, I might have been a “Love Doctor” in my past existence.

In my previous write ups, I discussed what the daily life of a CX professional looks like and identified the principles we stand for. Now you may be wondering why ‘Love as a Strategy’ is a thing when we are talking about Customer Experience (CX). It’s because I am convinced that one of the keys to driving sustainable customer experience is the concept of “Love” …allow me to illustrate. At the centre of everything you do under Customer Experience is the “Customer.” All of the following fall under the sphere of CX…what the customer wants/needs, how easy it is for them to get it, how satisfied they are with it and many other parameters all in the hopes of getting them to be emotionally connected to your business. You could very easily phrase this as “getting the customer to fall and stay in love with you!

Let’s elaborate a bit more on the concept of “Love.” There are two quotes I found that fascinate me and which will provide a framework for my reasoning.

Love is that condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own.

Robert A. Heinlein

Mr. Heinlein describes love as a state where the happiness (or satisfaction) of another is inextricably linked to yours. If we have love for our customers, we will go to all lengths to ensure that the products and services we provide satisfy a need or in marketing terms, solves a problem. We won’t just stop there, we will put ourselves in the customer’s shoes and make sure these products and services are of quality and repeated value. Oftentimes, people are quick to make the sale and move on. They will be the most caring and understanding persons before the sale i.e. the courting stage. After the deal is done, any issue that follows isn’t treated with even a fraction of the attention or care shown during the sale.

The other day I ran out of ECG Prepaid Credits while at home on a weekend, right in the middle of my Zoom Class too. I immediately made payments to my usual vendor for the top up to be done so I could reconnect to electricity and re-join the class. Now this vendor has been excellent with previous such transactions. He is also very responsive and courteous during our interactions so I expected for this to be the usual transaction flow where I make the payments, he sends the receipt via WhatsApp and power is automatically restored. This time however, the power did not come back on several minutes after I had the receipt. After waiting for a while, I tried to use the metre phone pad (I hope that’s the name) to load the token but that wouldn’t turn on because the battery had run down. Here I was alone in the dark and with no alternative.

I went back to my vendor who promised to check and revert. I followed up consistently with no reward….no “Please hold on” or “I’m sorry but I am unable to assist” …nothing…and this vendor knew my plight. At the height of my frustration I even asked that we try a new purchase and again received no response. It was obvious, my challenge had become a nuisance. I later called the ECG Call Centre and was informed the vendor could not even have assisted with the challenge. If this vendor had some semblance of affection (or love) for me as a customer, he would have been affected by my unhappiness and dissatisfaction. Instead, in my hour of need and difficulty, I was treated like a completed transaction…. crossed out and tossed on to a file. We often do this but perhaps in different ways and settings. You may not be able to solve the problem but you must always find a way to show care. In this case, the vendor could have simply communicated empathy for my situation and apologised for his inability to assist. As you read this now, I can tell you I have not received any follow up message on the challenge.

I saw that you were perfect, and so I loved you. Then I saw that you were not perfect and I loved you even more.

Angelita Lim

This quote suggests that genuine love sees our flaws and loves us all the same; sometimes even more. Just like my experience with the ECG vendor, the test of true love is your ability to withstand challenges. When and how you resolve customer pain points is critical and is just as important as every other aspect of their journey. You should ask yourself the question; how would I feel if I was in this position?

I won’t pretend that we all don’t often go for the easier options. Showing someone you love them, takes time, effort and money; all of which are sometimes difficult to give.

Robert Azman,founder and CXO of Innovative CX Solutions describes the three elements of Customer Experience (People, Processes and Technology) as ‘The Three-Legged stool’

To design and execute customer experience, you need all the three elements to work in tandem. People need processes to operate efficiently, they need technology to deliver the experience seamlessly and that brings us back to the topic: “Love as a strategy.”

As a supervisor or team lead, how much do you love and value your staff? You can’t give what you don’t have. So to ensure your customers feel loved and valued by your staff, you need to show your subordinates the way by investing in their capacity building, process improvements and constant improvements in technology so they can work efficiently. If you love and value them, you won’t give them KPIs with no efficient structures and support to help them achieve these objectives. If you love them, you will pay them right and will do your best to treat them well at all times.

By feeling loved, you have empowered them to equally love their work and the customers for who they work.

Customer Experience is important to the growth and sustainability of your business. One of the keys to achieving this is love: love for your customers and your employees. Your “Love Doctor” has spoken 😅.

I leave you with the words of Maya Angelou.

I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.

Maya Angelou

Enjoy the month of love ❤️

Yvonne Quashie

CX Head, UBA Ghana

National Organiser, CXP Ghana

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