I'm constantly focussed on new ways to maximize customer satisfaction (beyond price factors) and increase employee engagement. Whether I am at my day job or on vacation, my CX hat is on. I pay attention to everything, including how employees communicate with customers as well as how employees interact with one another. My recent trip was no different when visiting The Lodge At Woodloch with my family. I could write a book about my Woodloch experience, however, there's a specific CX example that impressed me the most.
Yes, the place is beautiful and well designed. Likewise, the food is magnificent. And, there is never a moment of boredom, as Woodloch offers tons of indoor and outdoor activities. There are convenient amenities too, including a bathing suit dryer within the pool area. My list of customer experience Wow Moments is long, but let's discuss the one big takeaway that all companies can easily do.
The #1 CX WOW MOMENT that's easy to replicate:
Are you ready for the answer? It is not a complicated technical solution. In fact, it costs $0 to implement. My Wow Moment was.... meeting and conversing with the owner of Woodloch, John Kiesendahl. Welcoming guests is not a one-time occurrence. He is known for greeting his customers throughout their visits. Not only does he ENGAGE in conversations with customers, but he also actively LISTENS to what people say about their Woodloch experience and genuinely cares. This is what I call Doing CX Right!
John has an extraordinary way of humanizing experiences and making people feel important. When I met him, I sensed that he is the type of owner who would personally take action on anything that does not meet customer expectations. He explains the importance of customers and his company culture in an interview. "We operate from the top down: we start with the guest. What's going to make them happy? What's going to bring them back." I believe it. He is truly walking the CX talk!
CX success is not just about being customer-centric, but also employee focussed too.
I couldn't agree more with John's statement: "Always treat your staff with respect and rub elbows with all employees." He clearly means what he says, as I recognized many employees from my prior visits. Retention and loyalty do not happen automatically. It takes commitment and intentional focus to maximize employee satisfaction.
My Woodloch experience serves as a great reminder:
Building and maintaining a Customer-Centric (CX) culture starts at the top. Executives and company owners need to "Show Up" and meet with employees and customers. Managers in leadership roles need to do the same too. Working behind closed doors does not produce an engaged workforce. In fact, it causes the exact opposite. In my upcoming articles, I will share more about creating an exceptional onboarding experience using Woodloch as a model that has customers, like me, talking and recommending the place. While I focused on the hospitality industry, customer experience best practices apply to all businesses. Are YOU using CX as your brand differentiator?
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*All opinions expressed on the DoingCXRight Blog and site pages are the authors’ alone and do not reflect the opinions of or imply the endorsement of employers or other organizations.