First Published: January 18, 2016
When I accepted the newly created role of Chief Customer Success & Happiness Officer at Lifesize, only one thing was clear: customers needed to be at the forefront of our business. For me, this was an exciting opportunity to put into action everything I’d ever learned about making customers happy and keeping them that way.
The first task at hand was adopting a metric that Lifesize could rally around and simplified bringing the voice of our customers into the business. One that was tangible and rewarding for everyone involved. After considering Lifesize’s business model and product suite, the Net Promoter Score (NPS) quickly emerged as a measure that would offer the surest road to creating as many Lifesize fans as possible.
First, buy-in from the C-suite is essential, mostly because improving NPS requires a total change to a company’s culture and operational rhythm. Across the board, employees have to be willing and able to change based on customer feedback, and the C-suite must support this shift.
Second, employees have to accept ownership for the fact that everything they do impacts NPS. Therefore they must be willing to overhaul the way they serve customers, based on the data at hand.
Once everyone is on board, the goal is to create as many Promoters as possible.
At Lifesize, we started by surveying our customers, calling them to listen to their feedback and perform root-cause analysis on all the issues they brought to the table. Sometimes there was low-hanging fruit, such as customers who simply needed help discovering new features, or with the onboarding process in general. We also made sure to focus on the positive, as we didn’t want to break what was working well. Most importantly we were completely transparent with every Lifesizer, giving them complete access to all the feedback and giving praise to Lifesizers who were creating great experiences for our customers.
For larger issues, we made solutions a priority and assigned a lead to these initiatives to ensure resolution to complex cross-functional change. Even when we weren’t able to immediately solve a problem, we kept an execution-oriented mindset. This is what allowed for continuous improvement over time.
Once the feedback started rolling in – and especially once we started implementing our solutions to the larger problems – the final piece was accountability. For this, we circled back to each customer to close the communications loop. It was imperative to let them know we’d made improvements as a direct response to their feedback. We found the best way to do this was both direct interaction by the owner assigned to the issue and via newsletters & community posts to our entire customer base – not only to dissatisfied parties. At the heart of this effort, even the Promoters need to know we’re eager to hear their suggestions and will respond to them as soon as we’re aware.
Have you found similar success? We’d love to hear about it.