You can’t earn the trust of your customers with a policy statement.
You can only earn trust with actions.
Don Peppers – Customer Relationship Management and Marketing Expert
The problem is that the “actions” your company takes are taken by employees, not by the CEO or the Board of Directors. As far as a customer is concerned, the ordinary, low-level customer-contact employee they interact with on the phone or at the store – that employee is your company.
If you want to ensure that your company treats customers the way you would want to be treated if you were a customer yourself, then you need to manage the way individual employees deal with and interact with customers.
Obviously, policies and practices will be involved, but procedures by themselves won’t be sufficient. What you really need is a “culture of customer trust” within your company.
Writing a “value statement” for your company is not at all the same thing as living it, nor will it have much impact on your real-world culture.
Do the right thing for customers and be a highly admired company.
That’s a great attitude to take toward customers, the market, and the business’s overall purpose. It’s a marvelous statement of values for a forward-thinking, customer-oriented company. Yet everyone in the organization was focused on one thing: Do whatever it takes to make the numbers.
The culture at your firm will reflect how you measure success, how you reward people, what tasks you consider to be important, how quickly and effectively you make decisions, and who approves decisions.
Your culture will reflect how friendly people are to others, how trusting they are, how much disagreement is tolerated, and what actions are considered out of bounds.
You can write down the values you wish you had, but if you want your firm to live up to them then you’d better make sure that all your systems and processes are aligned with them, too.
Martha Rogers’ Keynote at Retalix Customer Conference
Don Peppers’ expertise and clear, concise way of thinking places him in high demand as both a speaker and a management advisor with Fortune 500 executives and entrepreneurs seeking to identify their most valuable customers, increase customer satisfaction, and improve ROI and ROC.
Recognized for over a decade as one of the leading authorities on customer-focused relationship management strategies for business, Don Peppers is an acclaimed author and a founding partner of the world’s premier customer-centered management consulting firm. Don Peppers provides clients with world-class customer strategy, flawlessly executed, for bottom-line impact, focused on helping clients understand their customers and the value that they create.
Don Peppers is a popular voice among editors and the media, both online and in print, and is the co-author, with Martha Rogers, Ph.D., of a series of international best sellers that have collectively sold over a million copies in 17 languages. The One to One Future was named by Inc. Magazine’s editor as “one of the two or three most important business books of all time,” and is considered by many as the bible of the CRM revolution. Don Peppers and Martha Rogers’ most innovative strategic thinking is embodied in their books, Rules to Break & Laws to Follow and Return On Customer (or ROC) which advanced the concepts and tenets of business valuation to the next evolutionary stage, documenting the customer base as a revenue-producing asset for businesses, capable of driving a company’s long-term economic worth. It climbed to the top 20 business books on Amazon. Fast Company cited the books on their list of the 25 “Best Books” in business. Return On Customer was also a finalist in the American Marketing Association Foundation’s Berry-AMA Book Prize, for innovation and worldwide contribution to the professional field.
Don Pepper’s vision, perspective and thoughtful analysis of global business practices has earned him some significant citations by internationally recognized entities. The Times of London has cited him among their “Top 50 Business Brains”. Similarly, the United Kingdom’s premier marketing organization, the Chartered Institute for Marketing, cited Don Peppers among their inaugural listing of the 50 “most influential thinkers in marketing and business today.” Don Peppers has been ranked by Accenture’s Institute for Strategic Change among the global “Top 100 Business Intellectuals” for two years running. Business 2.0 Magazine named him one of the “foremost business gurus of our times,” and the World Technology Network has cited Don Peppers as an “innovator most likely to create visionary ‘ripple effects’.” Inc. Magazine cited Don Peppers & Martha Rogers as Web Awards winners for the innovative way their firm uses the Internet to leverage their collective expertise to service clients.