Customer service and customer experience (CX) have become as hot of topics as any in business. Owners of small businesses and leaders of the largest companies recognize the importance of CX. It’s what drives our business. It’s become a customer expectation. Don’t deliver on the CX and the customer will find someone – or some company – that does. And, not only do you have to deliver on the experience, you have to stand out and be different. In many of our customer service workshops, we do an exercise where the participants answer a powerful question that helps them understand what makes them different:

Why should someone do business with us?

In other words, why us instead of our competition. What do we do differently than our competitor? And, even if it is different, do our customers care? And, more importantly, will that difference make a customer do more business with us versus others that sell a similar product or service? These are great questions that can cause us to have two to three hours of conversation.

Today, there is a twist. If you’ve been following my work, you know that I believe that what’s happening on the inside of a company is felt on the outside by the customer. Just as a company wants to keep their best customers, there also needs to be a focus on what you do to keep employees. So, the new question isn’t about customers. It’s about employees and the employee experience (EX). And, that question is:

Why would someone want to work for our company?

While this question may seem totally focused on the employee, it really isn’t. Yes, it goes to the way employees are treated, but it also directly ties to the customer experience. Because, without happy employees, you aren’t going to have engaged employees. And, a lack of engagement has a direct impact on the customer experience.

There are plenty of stats and facts that prove to be the best place to buy from, you have to be the best place to work for. Take a look at the list of the top 100 companies who provide the best customer service and you’ll see a lot of overlap with the top 100 companies who are considered the best places to work. You can’t ignore the obvious.

So, is your CX in balance with your EX? Do you have engaged employees who feel a sense of ownership and pride when they are at work? Do they own their customer’s experience? In other words, do they take responsibility for their role in creating a good CX? Answer these questions and you’ll have an idea of the direction you’re headed – or need to head – to create an amazing customer experience.