How’s Your “Customer Experience”?

Recently I bought a new Mini Cooper S. While I love driving the car – something that is important to me – one of the highlights was the purchasing experience. From going online, signing on, reading the humorous content, designing my own Mini, ordering the car, following the production and delivery of the car online, and even the unveiling of my car at the dealership, it was all part of the experience. And then there are the things that they’ve sent me in the mail since I’ve owned the car…

Yes, the Mini is great, and I love driving it. But when I talk to people about my car, I find myself talking about the experience of buying it as much as I talk about driving it, its performance, and its gas mileage. Think about that. Mini has made the process of me giving them my hard-earned money fun!

If you’ve bought anything from Apple, you know what I’m talking about. From the experience at the Apple Store to the bag and box the product comes home in, it’s a cool experience. It’s all part of why I enjoy Apple products. Sure, they work they way I want them to, but the experience of buying them and using them is as important as what they do. The fact that they work all the time is the price of admission; the experience is the icing on the cake and what makes it special.

This applies to you, too. You can do your job as well or better than anyone else, but if the experience others have of you is not at Mini or Apple levels you will not “sell” as well as you could.

Some people think that all you need to do is do your job and you’re all set. That’s not the case. No, your “customer experience” is as important as what you do. And that experience is the experience the people around you have.

Not long ago I coached a young man who had exceptional skills and knowledge. He was a superstar from that point of view. The problem was that he rubbed people the wrong way. He did far more talking than he did listening and asking questions. While speaking with him, at least half the time he would interrupt me and begin talking about what he wanted to talk about. Most of those times he was telling me how to do what I was there to coach him to do, and why everyone else were doing things the wrong way. If only he’d listened and asked more questions… Not only would he learn a lot more and become even better at what he does, but he wouldn’t rub co-workers the wrong way. His customer experience would be better.

So, what’s the experience like of working with you? Are you an Apple or Mini, or something less enjoyable – something like the young man I just mentioned? The challenge is that you don’t know for sure, because it’s not your perception that matters. It’s other people’s perception that matters. You may think your customer experience is good, but is it?

Performance is not just one thing (skills, knowledge); it’s everything. And that includes your customer experience.

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One Response to “How’s Your “Customer Experience”?”

  1. I’m getting sick of all the people saying they hate Apple and the iPhone.