No matter how great the intentions you have with delivering great customer service, ultimately, only one question matters to customer service effectiveness.
Steven Stowell with the Center for Management and Organization Effectiveness recently shared his post on the ultimate goal for the strategy of an organization, to provide value to the business.
There’s a disconnect today between executives who preach delivering value to the organization and its shareholders and the employees in charge or systems, processes, and services. Even businesses leaders are confused with what their ultimate purpose should be.
No matter what type of business you are or what industry you are in, there is always someone looking to do the same thing you do bigger, faster, better, or cheaper than you.
Good is no longer good enough
It’s not enough to do something well, you have to be great. Being great in what you do takes alignment between all groups in an organization and between members of teams within an organization.
The ultimate measure stick to determine the effectiveness of a team to the overall organization lies in asking one simple question.
The Most Important Question: Are your actions helping to create a new or keep an existing customer? If not, it’s expendable.
This is a harsh reality, but reality nonetheless. If what you’re doing today isn’t helping to acquire customers or to keep existing customers, then there are other actions which may be more valuable to the organization that you can perform.
The purpose of business is to create and keep a customer.
Creating and keeping a customer
Every department, every team, and every individual in an organization realize that the actions they perform each day have to fit into the strategy of the organization and provide value in terms of acquiring new customers and keeping existing customers. Otherwise they are detractors to the mission of the organization.
If it’s not about the customer, it’s a hobby.
Drucker DIDN’T get it wrong. If the purpose of your business isn’t to create and keep a customer, it’s not a business, it’s a hobby.
Hobbies are a luxury. Hobbies don’t require turning profits from investments made. If you just set out to do something you like, without asking yourself if there are customers who will pay for it, then you’re pursuing a hobby. Could it lead to a business opportunity later on? Sure. But right now it’s the pursuit of a hobby. Whether it’s developing an iPhone app, creating a service on the Web, selling some widget on your person site, writing a blog, building an electric car, or developing commercial space travel, if you’re a business, your focus has to be on paying customers.
Even non-customer facing teams and departments must be held to the same standard as those whose primary roles are to sell to and support customers because they service or support the individuals who service and support customers.
Win the Customer!
The customer is the foundation of a business.
The customer keeps the business in existence.
The customer funds the corporation that gives employment.
The customer chooses to buy/subscribe/enroll/sign up for what generates profit for the business.
The customer is business profit.
The customer is shareholder value.
Every single member of the organization must be focused on creating and keeping customers.