The CFIB recently reported on business confidence figures, and this has shown a big dip to its lowest level in 6 months. Still 66.9% of Executives expect their performance to be stronger in the next year. However, a sizable 33% have negative opinions and these companies will be behaving in different ways to the positive group.
The question is what are those differences?
Over the last 3 years at Plutus we have noticed that the successful companies (the Leaders in their Industries) are significantly better at developing a Strategic approach to managing in tough times rather than tactical. For example, it is not unusual for an under performing business to retreat into day to day survival mode, keeping costs at a minimum, and avoiding longer term plans. The problem is that is a business becomes too fixated on the day to day, they ignore the external environment ( what the competition is up to, what opportunities are emerging in the market) and especially they signal to their customers that all is not well in the company. This becomes a fatal flaw if the business reduces its level of customer service, and affects the relationships with clients.
This is the time to take a strategic approach to customers, at the very least. This is the must-do moment to develop a Customer Service strategy that seeks to understand their needs in tough times, enhance relationships, and cement this by working together to find out solutions for turbulent times.
So what can a CEO do?
- Review the customer journey from the first contact or order to after sales service.
- Assess the processes and technologies that add or detract from the customer experience.
- Differentiate your business from competitors by enhancing your products or services.
- Look to develop a culture of continuous improvement across your entire organization that focuses on the customer.
- Ensure that all of your employees are aligned to the strategy.
At Plutus we can assist you to prepare the strategic blueprint for a customer service strategy, and the first meeting is without any obligation.