Guiding Lights for the Customer Journey

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Guiding lights

Night lights come in many forms and styles. The one in the room where Chip’s granddaughters sleep when they come for a visit looks like a pink princess crown. We have a friend who is an avid bird watcher—every night light in his house is a different bird. We once saw a night light in a bar that put a Christmas bubble light behind a picture of a guy drinking a mug of beer. The bubble light made the night light animated!

Night lights serve many purposes.  Some light the way along a path in the dark to keep someone from getting lost or off in the bushes. Some night lights are a symbol of hospitality (“We’ll leave a light on for you”). Others communicate an important message—like “we are open” or “this area is safe.” Night lights are powerful symbols of security, attentiveness and caring.

Today’s wired and dangerous customers expect to journey through their experience with your organization without friction, hassle or delay. There are[…] Continue...

What Does Time Mean to your Customers?

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TimerThe fact that time is a completely made-up component in nature was one of the hardest concepts to get your head around in high school physics class.

All of nature knows night from day, but your dog is clueless about what 9:30 means. When we tell someone, “Why don’t we meet in an hour,” we are not only operating on a “made up” agreement regarding the precise moment of rendezvous, we are relying on a made up understanding of what “an hour” means. The measurement of time is a non-existent construct we are taught from the instant we heard, “time for bed.”

Today’s wired and dangerous customers live in a 24 x 7 x 365 day “wired” world where they can access most of what they want, when they want it, and how they want it. If your organization is not focused on meeting these service time expectations, customers are quick to leave for one that can.

Time has become a crucial component for customers’ expectations of “promises kept.” Blame[…] Continue...

Are Your Customers Experiencing Unconditional Service?

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John PattRamen is a traditional Japanese noodle dish that, well prepared, is a highly-desired delicacy.

That is the back story for the movie, The Ramen Girl. A young woman finds herself in Tokyo and wants to understudy a master ramen chef who speaks no English; she speaks no Japanese. He’s impatient and demanding; she works hard to be perfect.

The climax of the movie (without giving away too much) happens when the frustrated chef takes the equally frustrated protégé to visit his mother, the person who taught him to be a great ramen chef.

Creating ramen, the mother tells the young women, is not about mixing ingredients in the proper proportion and cooking the broth at the right temperature. In order to make a dish that connects your heart to your customer’s heart, you must put your soul into the preparation and presentation, not just your smarts and sweat.

It was a turning point. The woman let go of her pursuit of precision and embraced the “from the heart”[…] Continue...

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