Customer Centricity is a Mind-set

“Customer centrism and usefulness requires playing the long game, and attempting to achieve unprecedented relevancy.” – Jay Baer

The dictionary defines a mind-set as “the established set of attitudes held by someone”. Going by this definition, customer centricity is a mind-set too. It is about having the right attitude towards your customers, your employees and your company to ensure that everyone is focused in the same direction and that each person in your company can view service, products and processes from the stand-point of customers. Unless your company can establish and set the premise, that customer centricity is a mind-set, in stone it would be tough to develop and evolve your company’s strategies forward and in keeping with the customer’s expectations. With a customer centric mind-set and culture your company would have a sustainable and in-depth understanding of the psyche and mind-set of your customers and you would be able to evolve according to them.

As the idea that customer centricity is a mind-set penetrates and permeates the company, there would be a significant change in the way that your company and its employees approach the concept of customer service.  It would be simpler to link the company’s processes and development needs with the preferences of the customer such that both are taken care of in the company’s strategic plans and initiatives. This merger is what constitutes having a customer centric mind-set.

To teach and practice that customer centricity is a mind-set, everyone in the company should think the same way. The company must clearly lay down before everyone the needs, expectations and preferences of the customer and these must be the facilitators and stimuli for a change in the mind-set. It should become the common feel and pulse of the company allowing everyone in the company to feel empathy and closeness to their customers. The idea that customer centricity is a mind-set must filter down from the highest ranks for it to be successful. An integrated approach will become the driving force to implement such a mind-set among the company and all those connected with it. The truth is that without following customer centricity, your company and brand after a while will lose its relevance and standing with customers and you might as well shut shop.

Customer centricity is a mind-set and must be ingrained in the working and attitude of each person within the company. With such a mind-set you would automatically think from the customer’s perspective and everything you do would be centred-around how to make the customer’s life easier. Once customers are taken good care of, your company and its employees will find success in everything they do. Acknowledging that customer centricity is a mind-set will goad you towards establishing robust, durable and long standing relationships with your customers which in turn leads to customer trust, loyalty and profitability. Whatever approaches your company uses, if it centres on the customer, success will not elude you for too long.

When a company knows that customer centricity is a mind-set their branding strategies would also be stronger and more focused. To get the customer to like your brand, the brand must speak to them, be something that they can identify with and know that in being associated with the brand, not only will they be linking with something that is ‘like them’ but also something that will benefit them now and in the future. A simple yet powerful strategy!

To inculcate and create a buzz around customer centricity as a mind-set, companies would need to commit to some changes – minor and maybe some significant ones too.

– There was a time in the business environment when companies could safely focus on how to make more money and increase their sales (even at the expense of the customer). Not any more – the business scenario is far too competitive to take this risk. The focus has now shifted to how companies can delight the customers, give them what they want, when they want and how they want. You are doing no one else but yourself a favour when you adopt and recognize the needs of the customer first and create products and serve them in a way that simplifies their lives. When customers can perceive your company as a go-to company they will trust you more, provide repeated business and also bring their friends to do business with you. The simple premise that customer centricity is a mind-set has the potential to turn your business around and make it soar – higher and better than your closest competitors.

– When you know that customer centricity is a mind-set, you would start at the beginning. By this we mean that you would hire the kind of people that already possess such a mind-set – it is easier to hire someone like this than teach them the value of a customer centric focus. A person with an attitude of empathy and a desire to alleviate problems will be an asset for your company and would work wonders for your company’s image.

– To display to your customers that you believe in customer centricity is a mind-set, you will solicit their feedback, make note of their comments and information and be ready to resolve the smallest problem they seem to have. Remain connected, engage with them and reach out to them via every communication channel but preferably the one that they seem to be more ‘attached’ to. Customers may not know exactly what they want or are looking for, but when your company is proactive in gathering and analysing the data they leave behind, it will be simpler to fashion products and service to suit them. Don’t wait for your customers to come to you – instead reach out to them with possible solutions and methods to make life easier for them.

Unless you reach out and mingle with your customers you will never know the extent of their satisfaction or dissatisfaction and neither would you be able to do anything about either of them. By engaging with customers you would be able to determine early on in the relationship whether your customers are happy dealing with you, would they stay with you for long and also how you can make each interaction and experience a memorable one.

When customer centricity is a mind-set your company would do anything to show love and concern for the customers. Use technology to your advantage – create innovative products, find new ways to garner and manage customer data and raise your customer standards to the most superior level. You will do whatever it takes to gain their loyalty and then you will be sure that customers will reward you with this attribute and partner with you towards success.

When customer centricity is a mind-set, you will think ahead – becoming pro-active and anticipate the customer’s needs and behaviours. This will lead to new product offerings, better service and will instil confidence in the mind of customers for your company.

The market has changed significantly and that is mainly due to what customers have begun to expect and demand. Given the rise in competition and widespread globalization, companies have no choice but to become and remain customer centric. Moving away or being distracted from this goal could have serious damaging consequences.  Being customer centric is a mind-set and the sooner companies change their mind-set to match this, the faster they will move towards profitability and success.

 

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