CCO Aptitude #2: Make Them Listen

A Customer Leader translates the customer information into compelling, disruptive and engaging nuggets of information.  They make people WANT to have more…to crave knowing more.

Often when a company talks about “listening” to customers, that notion is immediately collapsed into a “voice of the customer” (VOC) program.  That is NOT the action I am referring to with this aptitude.

Make Customers Human

Think of “make them listen” as “make customers human.” Your job is to take customers off the spread sheets and survey results to advance a conversation within your organization about the lives of your customers – their experiences – and who they are. This means finding new and disruptive ways to engage your executives and throughout the ranks of your company in wanting to hear their words, listen to what is going on in their lives…so that they have great caring and personal connection to who they are as people.

Ways to Engage Leadership & Employees

The best companies, those beloved and advocated for by their customers engage people actively in activities:
• Starting every new hire in the marketplace working the frontline or in the warehouse
• Requiring executives to go out and fill orders during the holidays
• Doing  monthly huddles – executives with the frontlines in a transparent “fireside” chat
• Calling lost customers to understand what happened…and to apologize

These activities put the voice of the customer in the ear of the organization. They create empathy and a culture of people who care not just about what they sell, but about the lives of the people who they impact. This grows a different type of company and also helps you with building executive engagement and the passionate direction that separates a beloved company from an “everyday” company.

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