I just returned from our customer event - OneWorld’15 last week from San Francisco, and even before I had time to recover from the travel, CSS Corp was deep in the jungle donating camera traps to the forest officials in the Indian state of Karnataka. Both were two of the most humbling experiences I had in recent times. Why ? Because despite what we choose to believe, we exist because of our customers in the business world and we exist literally because nature allows us too.
With a focus around Customer Experience, I came across some interesting takeaways for our team and more importantly for myself at the event I came back from.
- Customers sign up for you. Despite best contracts and best rates it is no puzzle that they work to secure the best deal for their business. But it is the feeling of how they are treated that really gets them to stick. Now I am a sucker for emotional stories and boy did I get a few of them at the event. A senior executive from a Fortune 500 company walked up to me and said “You know Purnima – We love CSS Corp. We love the fact that they are there no matter what time of the day or night for me and my team. I signed for some rather steep deadlines without consulting the team in India but you know what they delivered. It is as if my KRA automatically became theirs.”
- Customers love the goodies. I just love it when I get a complimentary box of chocolates in my hotel room. Seriously; who does not? Most of us get so caught up in our regular scheme of things we forget to make that effort to make our clients feel special. I can’t forget my mom’s birthday or our marriage anniversary and there are some dates that stay on your mind forever because no matter what, they are special people and they will always stay that way. Who doesn’t want to feel that way? Customers too are very special human beings. You see my point?
- Customers may go but shared memories are always a good conversation starter. At the same event I was fortunate enough to reconnect with the CTO of a very large software organisation with whom we had lost connect for a year or two. It was tough to get him there but he did come and that was such a great way to meet up again and share some of the fun moments of the time we last met. People often leave the organisation but experience of shared memories are always a good enough reason to reconnect.
- Customers love being made special.I talked above on how they love the goodies. This is a wee bit different than that. Special people in your lives are special because you make them feel that way. Not because you have to, but because you want to. Our customers are no different. We were so touched at the event when the CIO of an Ivy League University stood up on stage and said that he came to CSS Corp events because we made him feel so special. Now I don’t know what exactly we did that made him feel so special! Honestly. He is just special for us period.
Now a lot of you may wonder why I brought in the forests in the first part of my blog. Whenever I go to the forests I feel very excited. Because every journey into the forest is like a new experience I want to cherish. It suddenly brings together a whole meaning to the term “web of life”.
Many a time we all get caught in the web of things that often make the larger picture nebulous: Bringing that next deal or bagging the next incentive or whatever we choose to get excited about. We often stop to think of the larger picture; but the picture is there for us to weave and create great stories. Our customers too are there to create great experiences with. Give them an experience to cherish and they are your friends for life. After all isn’t that what we all live for. Great memories that last a lifetime?