My organization’s COO posted this blog post this morning on our Yammer feed. When I first read it and the comments on Yammer I thought,” yes, we do this”–we are a small organization and for the most part , in terms of customer service ,any one in the office could be approached in the office and appropriately answer questions or direct them in the right place.
Then I read the article, and the importance of having a customer-driven person in the board room aka a Chief Customer Officer. I LOVE the idea of this, but could see how it would be hard to catch on in a corporate company.
A position such as this would be something I see as relevant in all organizations. At times it is so easy for those in the board room to get caught up in numbers, bottom lines, quantitative goals that the customer is lost–the customer becomes a product instead of a driving force. Companies sometimes givers the members what the company THINKS that the customer wants long-term. And sometimes this changes the experience for the customer in the present or immediate future. This can create a cyclical problem if the company is not right, then the long -term plan becomes the present and because the customer’s point of view wsa not brought in at the beginning the plan still does not TRULY have the customer in mind.
Finances has a voice in the board room, operations has a voice in the board room, why shouldn’t the customer have a voice in the board room? In my opinion, there is no question that there needs to be a “touchy feely” person in the room to temper out all of the people looking at the black and white “facts” and numbers. There is a narrative behind every number and “fact” and someone with a qualitative, customer-driven focus can change the story in the board room.
Members mattering most starts in a organizations annual goals, what they see as their bottom line and what they consider success.