Making An IMPACT In The Midst Of Change!

FRONTOne of the most important factors of any position I consider today is… my ability to make an IMPACT. Here’s why…

In today’s job market, organizational changes are inevitable and are the new normal for big and small companies alike. Long gone are the days where people can stay in a single role/position at a company for 30+ years waiting and longing for retirement. Today’s market is much more fluid; with ongoing acquisitions, re-orgs, organizational changes, reporting changes, etc.; and therefore ongoing changes are a part of today’s reality.In this very fluid market; regardless of roles, titles, & responsibilities; IMPACT is the most important contribution an employee can bring.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not talking about being a short time transient worker that doesn’t have any tenure within a company. I am simply talking about being fluid and flexible enough to traverse the landscape as changes come. This type of tenacity is pivotal as it helps you to quickly adapt and identify your ability to create a positive impact in your new reality, leads to an immeasurable amount of job satisfaction, and shows your employer you can be trusted as a leader to adapt in the midst of change.

So, if you find yourself in the midst of change… I encourage you to spend very little time reminiscing and being tethered to the past… instead push past all the distractions, focus on what is in front of you, and start proactively seeking out areas that you can make an impact now!

The Inner Workings of EMC…

Recently there have been numerous rumors flying around about EMC… shocking… there always is! The danger of any type of speculation (a theory or conjecture without firm evidence) is that it distracts you from the present… and as the 2014 Superbowl Champion Seattle Seahawks Quarterback Russell Wilson says… “There’s no time to sleep!”… Well, theres no time to be distracted either!

I have worked at EMC for six years and have been responsible for managing the global Customer Loyalty programs for one of our largest divisions. I have worked with dozens of high ranking executives and hundreds of managers, teams, and individuals. Do you want some insider information on EMC? Do you want to know the inner workings of EMC and what makes us tick? Well, it is really quite simple, it’s called TOTAL CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE.

EMC’s Total Customer Experience is a companywide program committed to consistently exceeding customer and partner expectations as they engage, enable, and evolve with us. I can personally attest that our employees are passionate about the customer experience and find ways every day to go above and beyond to ensure that we are investing in areas that matter most to our customers.

On Tuesday, October 7, 2014, our company will hold celebrations around the world in observance of what we are calling the Total Customer Experience Day, a special occasion to reinforce our commitment to providing customers and partners with the very best experience in our industry. The day will include 10+ onsite events at EMC offices in 7 countries, as well as a virtual celebration with an interactive online discussion.

DURING THIS EVENT YOU WILL:

  • Hear from customers on their end-to-end EMC experience
  • Learn about EMC’s holistic approach tomeasure and act on customer feedback
  • Hear from passionate employees and leaders about why they are committed to the customer experience
  • Tour the brand new Experience Analytics Showcase—an interactive demo that highlights diverse aspects of the customer experience and will be available to everyone on emc.com on October 7th!
  • Ask technical experts your questions during a live Q&A session

We hope you will join us!
https://community.emc.com/docs/DOC-38953

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Getting Back To Basics

Corporations obviously believe in the fundamental concept of re-inventing themselves to become more effective in reaching their customers. Even the mighty Coca-Cola Company has done it multiple times… some of those efforts flopped, but some of them were very successful too. The ideas of re-tooling, re-purposing, and re-energizing are not new at all, but sometimes re-inventing is more about “getting back to basics” than it is about the “latest greatest new and snazzy”!

In-order to “get back to the basics” for your organization, you will need to:

  1. Identify and/or  know what your fundamental beliefs are
  2. Determine where you are today
  3. Identify what the gaps are between those two positions
  4. Devise a strategy on how to get from “where you are” to “where you want to be”
  5. Map out tactical steps that are aligned to the strategy
  6. Start executing the tactics and strategy
  7. Be prepared for things to go wrong and compensate the tactics and strategy as needed
  8. Dont’ do it alone… the more “buy-in” you have before you start the better!
Re-inventing an organization is a lot like taking a root bound tree out of a pot and planting it in the ground… your not changing the fundamentals of what the tree is, your just making sure it has room to grow! If you don’t transplant it it will eventually die… if you transplant it… it might die! So you must be willing to “transplant it with care” by having a good plan and strategy to do it. When you transplant a tree it will always go into some shock, and sometimes the tree will not survive… but if it does it will thrive!
Last but not least… “Getting Back To Basics” is not a demobilization or dismantling of what is already in place. People will need to be reminded of this fact continuously to avoid un-needed churn and distractions!

The “Magic Bullet” Survey Methodology…

I was recently talking to some of my loyalty industry colleagues about different methodologies and metrics that we use to quantify customer loyalty. There were many different approaches, opinions, and thoughts on the matter of course, but there were 2 universal beliefs among all of us:

1) There is NO “Magic Bullet Survey Methodology”
2) Taking “real” actions based upon the data is most important

Let me expound a bit…

Yes there are some methodologies that are better than others because they are more statistically accurate and/or they are easy to communicate with those who are going to consume and put into action the data… but in the end there is no magic bullet methodology.

Let’s take the Net Promoter Score(NPS) methodology for instance. I “like” NPS because it is easy to understand, measure, and communicate to a broad audience.. people easily get and understand what it is.. but NPS is not “the way, the truth, and the life” either. The score is like a fuel gauge… it is something you should obviously reference to see what the gauge says, but don’t fixate on it either… because you will lose track of the road and crash!

The most important function of a loyalty survey is your ability to take strategic and tactical actions based upon the data and drive real change in your organization. If you are not able to take real actions and deliver real change… why even bother doing a survey… just do a marketing campaign instead!

Net Promoter, NPS, and Net Promoter Score are trademarks of Satmetrix Systems, Inc., Bain & Company, and Fred Reichheld.

You Say Survey… I Say Program!

I constantly hear people talk about launching their new “survey” and how they are convinced it is going to help their business be a huge success… but when I scratch the surface and ask them what they are going to do with the data… they often do not have a clear answer to that question… or they say present it to executives.

It is rare that I hear a lot about the actions being taken on the data collected from these survey’s and governance of those actions being followed through and held accountable. Increasing Customer Loyalty is not one team’s or one persons responsibility and building loyalty requires both Tactical and Strategic improvements… we must execute “Key Improvement Area’s” in our business in-order to have a “program” instead of a “survey. I have actually told people before “we are in danger of having this be just another survey, let’s make sure we have a program!”… to me one of the differences is making sure that you have a well defined Governance Structure that cover three main things:

Executive Strategy
Company-Wide Action
Full Organization Accountability

Here is an example of a Governance Structure:

So, if you want to make great PowerPoint’s… run a survey… if you want to make real changes and increase customer loyalty… run a program. You Say Survey… I Say Program!

Loyalty Fortune Cookie #004

“Puppies and Customers both thrive off the same thing… Undivided Attention!”
~ Chris Antonelli | Fantasticfailures.com

 

Thank you to Jennifer Combs @JCPhotography for inspiration!

Loyalty Fortune Cookie #003

“Dis-Loyalty is like a distant lightning strike… you might not see what it is impacting”
~ Chris Antonelli | Fantasticfailures.com

Loyalty Fortune Cookie #002

“Running a survey without a program, is like riding a rollercoaster without a seatbelt!” 
~ Chris Antonelli | Fantasticfailures.com

Loyalty Fortune Cookie #001

Loyalty Fortune Cookie #001
“Failures are  inevitable, but the recovery is a choice.”  ~ Chris Antonelli | Fantasticfailures.com

The Ultimate Service!

Many years ago I was working as a Technical Support Manager handling high level customer escalations in-order to ensure customer loyalty was retained during “sticky” situations.

During these escalations I constantly had to to interact directly with Executive Teams within my company and our customers to help bring resolution to complex issues. To say that some of these interactions were intense would be an understatement. I am pretty calm under pressure, but during this time there were a few situations that really got me worked up. My boss at the time (Ron Hine) gave me some really good advice. He said “Chris, remember this isn’t brain surgery, no one is going to die over these situations”… it was a great reminder that yes, take my job seriously, but in the end put it in context too that someones life isn’t on the line.

Well, today I was thinking of Veterans Day and it got me reflecting about how we say “thank you for your service” to these men and women who have literally given up their rights and lives in-order to serve us… WOW! Yes, I love what I do for a living, love helping people, and am very passionate about customer loyalty… but there isn’t anything life threatening about it… the military personnel and families on the other hand literally DO put their lives on the line in the name of serving our country and therefore me.

So, I want to say THANK YOU for serving our country, thank you for serving ME in such a powerful way. Words cannot express my gratitude for you giving your life to provide The Ultimate Service for our country. God, Please bless America’s troops and their families!