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Humanizing CX: Shifting from Customer Experience to the Customer’s Experience

Credit: Allef Vinicius, @seteales Unsplash.com

Customer experience is powerful because it consists of two important ingredients, 1) people and 2) emotions. When we talk about CX as a matter of purpose and strategy, this is exactly where the phrases “put customers at the center of our business” and becoming “customer-centric” can and should come to life.

But honestly, we don’t really design for people or emotions today. We design for what we think of as customer intent and in turn, invest in touchpoints, conversions, transactions and desired outcomes that fall within our siloed swim lanes. It’s an inside-out process that’s often not integrated across our own organization. As a result, we program the humanity of experiences and leave customers to fend for themselves. Essentially, we leave to chance, the experiences that define the emotions people have, share and remember.

And that’s the thing to remember. No amount of traditional metrics will measure how someone feels after the event nor our intentions of making someone feel a certain way in each moment and as a whole. Experiences become memories whether they’re good or bad.

The future of CX, especially in light of AI and machine learning, real-time and predictive analytics and automation, must start with humanity…people and emotions. We must design the experiences we want people to have, share and remember. Technology is a powerful enabler of all of this. Agile and cross-functional operational models must also evolve to optimize for the new, real-time, on-demand, customer journey.

I always believed that the moment we shift from #CX as “Customer Experience” to #CX as the “Customer’s Experience,” we truly spark human-centered innovation. As a possessive, it reminds us that it’s their experience and perspective that matters.

Otherwise, we are building upon a foundation of yesterday’s mindsets and legacy touchpoints and metrics in the name of customer-centricity. We aren’t really breaking new ground or unlocking new possibilities. 

Customer experience isn’t one thing. It’s everything. A customer’s experience is defined by the sum of all engagements a customer has with your company, throughout their journey and lifecycle.

p.s. Happy #CXDay2019

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