The Customer Experience Podcast
The Customer Experience Podcast

Episode · 1 year ago

73. Marketing To Your Employees, Not Just Your Customers w/ Chris Wallace

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

We always talk about brand as a collection of promises that a company is making to its customers. At the end of the day, brand really comes down to the essence of a company.

 

However, if the people spending the money on the advertising do not have a strong bond with the people delivering that customer experience — the ones facing the customers — you have a catastrophic breakdown between promise and delivery.

 

Employee experience is customer experience if employees believe in the brand they are hired to represent.

 

In this episode, I interview Chris Wallace, Cofounder and President at InnerView Group, about marketing and branding to employees, not just customers.

 

A few of the takeaways:

 

- Build employee satisfaction to drive customer satisfaction — an upward spiral

 

- Avoid brand dilution by closing the gap between your brand promise and your customer experience

 

- Infuse your team with a sense of pride and purpose in their work and in your company

 

- Techniques & strategies for improving employee experience

 

Subscribe, listen, and rate/review the Customer Experience Podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Play or Google Podcasts, and find more episodes on our blog.

We want our employees to be proudof our companies, in our brands and what we stand for. The singlemost important thing you can do today is to create and deliver a better experiencefor your customers. Learn how sales, marketing and customer success experts create internalalignment, achieved desired outcomes and exceed customer expectations in a personal and human way. This is the customer experience podcast. Here's your host, Ethan Butte.Our company spends so much time, energy and money marketing our products and servicesto our customers and our potential customers. But what about our employees? Ourguest is here today to talk about internal marketing and brand consistency to this conversation. He brings twenty years of sales, marketing and corporate leadership experience at companieslike comcast, insight sales and the PGA. Today he's cofounder and president at InterviewGroup, a firm that helps companies engage their frontline teams to improve customerexperience and ultimately to boost revenue performance. Christopher Wallace, welcome to the customerexperience podcast, if and thank you so much for having me. I thinkthat's the best intro I've ever gotten. So great job with that. Alsobeg you. I'd small point of pride for me and I want you tofeel welcome and for people who know how beneficial this is going to be basedon your experience. But before we get going in earnest, I'm in ColoradoSprings. You are in the Philadelphia area. Correct, it's what's the current situationwith regard to the to the coronavirus pandemic? How's it affecting you oryour team or your customers? Yeah, wow, we could probably spend theentire time on just that, but we fortunately had been used to working remotelyover the years. We do have our head courters here in Philadelphia, whichis where most of our staff is, but we do have people sprinkled allover the country. We were all armed with our zoom accounts prior to priorto this happening. But I think from our customers perspective, it really isyou know, really depends. It's company to company, because you know,one of our one of our major comp customers, is the country's largest Internetservice provider and they're slammed right now. They're they're one of the most importantcompanies in the country right now and it's putting all sorts of different strain onthem from a capacity perspective that it is on other companies maybe in the manufacturingof the banking space. So it's really kind of industry to industry right now. Interesting. Yeah, it's the same for us. We have a numberof people who are coming to us. Like our current lead flow is justthrough the roof because we make it easy to stay facetoface with people through simplevideos and emails and and like you, we were, you know, wewere primarily in office together in Colorado Springs. Are about a hundred and fifty peopleand most of us are in the office physically, but we have enoughpeople up in Denver and in other cities around the country that we're all equippedto work remotely and do meetings remotely and all of that. And so isthe transition of the work itself hasn't been to challenging yet, although it's,you know, who knows? It depends how long it persists as well.Yeah, I think the only x factor for us is for the people onour team like myself, who have children, you know, at school age childrenthat we're trying to manage through some of the homeschool stuff right now,some of the remote learning, and that's a challenge because the workday is notexactly a workday anymore. But you know, we're managing we've got it a lotbetter than a lot of people do. So we're happy to keep on shoggingand my team's been great. We know we're talking daily, doing ourzoom calls, so we're making it work for right now. I love it. gratitudes. The is the way. So let's get going and we'll startwhere we always start, which is your thoughts or definition around customer experience.When I say customer experience, what does it mean to you, Christopher?Well, so I'm going to start by saying that one of the things thatwhen we when we built interview, when we had been in the professional servicesbusiness before and had some, i. had a lot of experience and consultingand when we started it, we were very intentional with with how we startedthe company, and one of those things was this idea of kind of thevision for the company, and we talked...

...about with the vision of our companyis to take something that seems intangible and turn it into something that can bedeposited in the bank. Okay, that's what that's part of our vision forour company and I think it translates really well into my definition of customer experience, because I think of customer experience as kind of the currency for the newgeneration. Right. It used to be products and features or, you know, kind of some of your more you know, traditional. You know,is the product better than the competition? Yes or no? There's so manycompanies, there's so many options, there's so many ways to get goods andservices that the products are are you the product parity, service parity just aboutin every single category, and I really do look at the experience as thegreat differentiator from brand to brand. So I guess my definition really is thethe added value that an organization is building into their interactions with customers that separatethem above and beyond their products and services. I like it. I like thevalue anchor and I liked that it is in the interactions, right,that is where the experiences kind of most felt, I think. So reallygood calling. You're absolutely right and it's a primary thesis on the show.Here's that hyper competition which you described in product parity render customer experiences as theultimate differentiator. So it's what a cool thing to be able to start acompany with that perspective and to make decisions through that, through that Lens.So we're going to be going, I feel like, a little bit backand forth between employee experience and brand branding. Brand experience, brand consistency, branddilution, and so I just wanted to tea up that I'm really excitedabout this one because both of them are truly inside out right. One ofmy early mentors around branding really may, made it clear that it needs tobe lived from the inside before it can be felt outside, and that's theway that you make it consistent. So I love this connection to the employee. And then don't know if you're familiar with the service profit chain, whichis a it's available for anyone to read kind of a digest version at Harvardbusiness. Forget to Harvard Business, our Harvard Business Book, Right. Yeah, correct, it was an article. You made a book. Yeah,and so that like when I when I when I was learning about your companyand anticipation of this, as just really excited because if I feel like that'sa significant intentionally, you're not perfectly consistent with that, which is the ideathat you know the revenue and the profitability are the outcomes. Customers are themidpoint, but really spending so much more time and energy building that internal servicequality and making sure that the employee experience is fantastic is the necessary precursor toall of it. So I guess we'll start here, which is the reasonI always ask about customer experiences, that you get a variety of answers,although there's some things, some consistent themes, and I feel like the same thingis true of branding. So I'd love for you to talk about brandand brand experience relative to customer experience in your view and your opinion, arethey synonymous? Are Their differences like? How do you think about that?Yeah, so, so I don't know that I would say that there's synonymous, but I think that they're they're sort of tied to one another. Right. I think that the way we always talk about brand is a brand isa collection of promises that a company is making to its customers. That's theway we think of it. We think of it as the brand really comesdown to the essence of a company, and the essence is why do weexist? What are we saying we can do for customers? Why do wehave a place in this world. Right. So we always come back to welook at the brand. Is Two promises that are being made. Welook at the customer experience as whether or not the Custo of the promises arebeing kept right. That's how we see the two of those things being linkedand it's really important that you look at them in tandem. You know,we found, both through research and through practical work, that they're just they'redisconnected far too much of the time. And what do you think the primarycauses there is? That is that one of them is overlooked or one ofthem is undervalue, like we're where's the disconnect? You think so? Ibelieve the disconnect and you know, I'm in the process of writing a researchand we did some research and or the...

...process of writing the research report rightnow. But from that research, what we've been able to see is inthe organizations that we support, and we're typically working with either a business toconsumer brand or a consumer brand that goes to market through, you know,be to B Toc. Maybe they have distributors or retail partners, but youknow, think of like a consumer electronics brand. They go to market youknow be to B Toc, but they're typically consumer brands and typically what we'reseeing is the people who are designing the brand and and sort of the architectsof that brand story, the people who make the promise and the people whokeep the prom so who are responsible for keeping the promise? The physical andmental distance between those two departments is probably wider than we even thought. Okay, I'll let me give you an example and the research that we just did, which it hasn't been released yet, but I'll share some of the findings. One of the things we found was in asking customer facing employees in consumerindustries, retail, airlines, hospitality, restaurants, you your typical consumer andconsumer industries, who do they see is most critical and helping them sort ofdeliver the customer experience and tell that brand story right? How do they knowwhat brand promises they need to keep right? Where do they get that from?Where do they get that direction from? We gave them six different groups withintheir organization that they could choose from. Marketing ranked five out of six.So the mental, again, physical and mental distance between somebody who worksa register and the person that that does the Advis is huge. It's evenbigger than we thought it was. To be on. So we knew itwas big, but we're seeing the the data tell us that it's wider thanwe even thought and to me that's a big challenge. Right, the peoplewho are spending the money on the advertising and spending the money with the youknow, to build the campaigns, if they are not linked, if theydo not have a strong bond with the people delivering that customer experience, youare bound to have a breakdown between promise and delivery, right, and that'swhat so many brands have as that breakdown the between promise and delivery. SoI'm going to come down to they simply just don't see each other. WhenI say they, the customer facing teams and the marketing and brand department andmost organizations just don't see each other as one another stakeholders enough of the time. What do you say that? That's one of the biggest points of valueand engagement when you engage with the company as interview is that? Is thatone of the disconnects? That's probably one of the bigger points that you're workingon or like, what's that? What's the scope of engagement? Yeah,that's really what it is. I mean a lot of it comes down toan and and I didn't say that was the rift simply because it's sort ofdoubtails in with what we do, but because, again, we were seeingfrom the data that's even bigger than we thought. But we really do builda bridge between that strategic vision of where the brand wants to go and theday to day execution. Right the campaign. Think of it this way. Ifa campaign is done, you go to your agency, you reposition yourself. You're going after a new demographic. You've got to you've got great creativeyou got great ads, you have a great add by and you go outwith that campaign and the demand starts flowing, the phones ring, the foot trafficpicks up, all those things, but the people who actually service thosecustomers are disconnected. Think about how much of a drag on the results ofthat campaign and uninformed and uninspired frontline employee group can be. Right. Thinkabout how big that disc and we've filled that gap. We've closed that gapfor companies and it again and it ends up being a much bigger than evenwe thought it would be, going in really interesting. It kind of teasup where I wanted to go next, which is your thoughts on the relationshipbetween the employee experience and the customer experience. Yeah, so we have I'll calla little I will call controversial but maybe a little bit provocative view ofsort of the employee experience to to customer experience. The way we look atthe link between the two is we believe...

...very strongly that employee so I wouldbet you'd get more definitions of employee experience than you would of customer experience becausepeople really look at that in very different ways. The way we look atit is you have people who are hired to do a job. If wecan put them in a position to believe in the brand that they represent rightand be in a position to serve that customer to the best of their ability, if they are good at their job every single day, if they areserving customers well and they are getting that positive feedback from customers, whether it'sjust in body language and exchange or, you know, in good natured interaction, or if it's coming through literal feedback through customer surveys and things like that, we believe the pride and what they do is going to grow right.So we believe very strongly in let's put them in a position to serve thecustomers the best they possibly can and in doing so you're going to build theirpride and working for the brand that they represent and their pride generally in servingcustomers. So we're very much a we look at it as help them servetheir customers, help them do their job to the best of their ability andtheir satisfaction with the work that they do and their engagement's going to go wayup. A lot of other organizations look at it as it, which isvery, very feasible and viable, is this idea of let's make happy employees, and happy employees make happy customers. So it's a lot of like employeeexperience becomes making sure that they've got, you know, great coffee machine intheir break rooms or their snacks or there's like a lot of like truly likeworkplace, like workplace empowerment type programs. Those are all well and good,but we cut straight to the the the chase and we say put them ina position to serve the customers better, get them more excited about the productsin the brand that they represent and watch their satisfaction and as an employee gothrough the roof. So good. It's a positive upward spiral and it remindsme of this idea that company culture is not a foodsball table or beer ontap. A lot of companies think that right, right. But to yourpoint, I love the you cut straight to it. And so what isthat? What does that look like in practice? Is this more internal training? Is this? What are a couple kind of tangible, actionable things around, like how do we get employee buying, especially maybe for a company that's beenoperating let's say four years? They kind of taken a lot of thisfor grand did and now you have, you know, the culture, whatis normal, what is accepted, what's been tolerated, what it feels liketo show up every day is a certain way. How do you start,from a practical standpoint, start transitioning that to get that buy in and thatbelief, like winning the hearts and minds of the employees so that the customerscan feel it? That's it's so it's a great question. So what youjust ask? You know the line we always use. As you know,people when we start talking about these types of things, marketers typically say wehave this challenge, but fixing it just feel so daunting, right, andthe reality is white feel so daunting is because they look at their employees,they separate their employees as one group and their customers as another group. Andmarketers are in the business of mass behavior change. That's what they do.Their job is to compel people to act in new ways based on a messagethat they've heard or or some sort of stimulus. And we look at itas it's not that hard and not that daunting if you take the things thatyou're so good at right now and you just apply them to the employee groupjust as if they were a buyer. Right. The biggest Aha here isto look at them as a buyer and consumer of your message, not asa messenger, just for a minute, right. If you can get themto buy it first and really believe in it, then getting them to bea messenger as a lot easier. Organizations go the other way around. Theytry to make people messengers a something that they don't necessarily believe it. Sowhat we do is, just like any good marketing campaign, we start withmarket research. We developed a tool called...

...the brand transfer studying the brand transferscore, and what we are quite literally doing is we are assessing an organization'smessage, sort of their core brand message, what are the key pillars of thatmessage and we're assessing the corporate architects of that message and then all thepeople out in the field or wherever else inside the organization that represent that message. And we are coming back to an organization with a point of view,just like you would with a customer, just as you would come back withmarket research and say, here's what the customers think of you, here's howthe customers view your view you. They don't think you're good at this.They think your competitions, you know, kicking your butt here, but theythink you're strong here. We're doing the same thing with the internal audience andwe're coming back to a marketer saying you believe your brand story is this,but you're losing twenty seven percent. You're Miss Aligned by twenty seven percent withyour retail team or you're misaligned, you know, seventeen percent, with yourwith your channel partners or your distributing, your distribution partners. So we're comingback to them with research, market research. It just so happens we're doing marketresearch on a different audience. But once you have that data in hand, again, what a marketers do with data? You build a messaging campaignand you drive tactics out in different mediums, out that are going to move theneedle. And the key here is you have to think far outside hittingsend on an email or posting a product training to really get people's attention andto compel them to change their behavior. You wouldn't try to train a customerto be excited about your brand, but that's how organizations that. Again,they're trying to make them messengers, the people represent the brand, messengers beforetheir believers. We want to flip the script for them. So the internalcampaigns that we run they look more like the type of campaign you'd run twoconsumers. Then they do something that you're typically doing through your training department.I love it. What team is this coming out of? Do you engagemarketing departments to do the work or do you'd provide it as a third party? We work with the marketing department, so we are typically partnering with itcould be anybody from the brand and in a core marketing team inside a brand. It could also be a channel leader, somebody that's responsible for channel marketing fora dealer channel or for a call center channel, or whatever the casemay be. So it's typically the marketing. The way it goes is marketing typicallysays man, wouldn't it be nice if I could get my people onmessage right, because that's our question to a marketer. How confident are youthat your people are on message? And they're like not so confident. Sowe say okay, great, so you think you might have this challenge.Then we become partners with the people like the sales leadership, the training team. We become the glue that sort of holds those things together. And toyour question earlier year about working with the customer facing teams in the marketing team, we sort of become that bridge. We become the conduit between the marketersthat just don't have the internal mechanisms to link up with those people down atthe front lines and we build that bridge for them and help sort of manageit over time. Love it. So how much of this is branding work? I mean say on message, and so you know, on message couldmean why are we all here? Why do we show up? Who Dowe serve and what do we solve for them at a high level? orit could be, like you know, you offered before, maybe a newcampaign or a new product or a new service that maybe the front line isis ignorant of or just playing misunderstands. And so how much are you talkingbrand in this scenario? So it's a really good question. So I this. I will say. Our focus isn't we don't build your brand. Wealways joke we're like be asf we don't build your brand, we just helpyou exert were execution people right, and I think that you know. Whatwe've done is we've tried to break it down into sort of six what I'mgoing to call triggers that you know that sort of drive the work that wedo. There's product and service launches. So, as a marketing team,we're bringing something new to market. Okay,...

...we haven't. We have a newthing that we want to get out there. Are Customers need it.We've done all the research. We got to get it to market. Thestory we're telling there is your frontline teams, whether you like it or not,their gatekeepers. You know, you need them to be offering this,you need them to be recognizing the customers need in order for this new productor service to be successful. You've got to open up those floodgates early andnot wait until you're thirty percent to your goal to figure out how to engagethose folks. Typically, most brands cannot drive enough demand to their doorstep tomake every product and service launch worthwhile. You've got it. You've got toget your front your frontline team engaged campaigns and promotions. So it's coming upon your your big selling season. You're making a big push. You've gotsome promotional pricing, you've got a key, you know, pricing, promotion outthere in the market place. You really want to get traction for it. You need to get your team bought in. It's another trigger getting intosome of the more philosophical ones around brand company, rebranding and mergers and acquisitions. Right. The common theme here is anytime change is coming to your brand, anytime you're pivoting, any time you're swiveling with your brand and you're addingsomething in bringing a new message out to the marketplace, that's typically where weget involved. But rebrands are a big one, and mergers and acquisitions.How do you bring two brands into one? How do you get people, asone of our client says, to quote unquote, act the brand right? I love that idea of how do you act the brand and a rebrandor a merger and acquisition scenario. That's such a key piece. Yeah,just bet. It just begs it. It's critical, especially that, youknow, with big companies you find that, you know, banks merge and peopledon't know how to talk about who they are, you know, onday one any more than they did the day before, and it causes alot of customer confusion. The last two are customer experience program so if companiesare investing in their customer experience, how do we make sure that their brandtruly is built into that program and it's launched in a way that's going todrive that that excitement and, frankly, it's going to make it stick atthe front lines? And finally, it's, you know, really dealer and channelsupport. You've got these programs that you need to push out to callit a non employee and not employee base. These are people who don't have todo it because it's on their scorecard or their bonused on it. It'speople that you have to really influence into driving the actions that you want.So those are really the six triggers. That's great. I like the frameworkand that last step there. I mean in a lot of cases, dependingon the nature of the partnership. The customer doesn't know or care whether they'redirect employees or not. I mean functionally they are. They are brand representatives, whether you want them to be or not. So it's so obviously importantto to rope them in and make sure that they understand everything the same wayas a direct employee would. Let's talk for a minute about brand dilution,like what are the costs there? How do we get more consistent? Howdoes it happen? Just talk about some of the dynamics there. Yeah,so, so brand delution is is quite simply the difference between what the brandis promising and what the customer here's right. We talked about the definition brand inthe definition addition of definition of custom and experience. We look at brandillusionist, the gap between those two things. Right. How why does that gap? You know, in the research that we've done with with senior levelmarketers and customer experience executives, what we found was it was really interesting.The people who felt like their organization was poor at getting that message out inthe lined way. They sort of perceived that the diluted message had at acost still significant. Right, about about half of the respondence that we hadvalued that gap at five million dollars, between five and ten million annually,or, excuse me, north to five million annually. But for the organizationsthat felt like they were good at it, we ask them to ascribe a valueto that consistent message. Sixty two percent of those people. Know,these were with larger organizations, but sixty two percent of those people put aprice tag of ten million dollars plus on...

...the value of having that consistent message. And when I say the value we're talking we're not talking about this isn'tpaper value. We're talking about in the transactions day to day, in theinteractions that we talked about earlier. We are winning more business because our peoplecan represent our brand more consistently, our brand can stand out, our brandhas value and the more we live our brand and act the brand, themore business we're going to win. That's what that dollar value is is tellingus is the brands who do this well, sixty two percent said they would puta value of more than ten million dollars annually on that attribute of theirorganization. So it's not even just the perceived costs or high enough, butthe actual value the companies are realizing actually is greater than the perceived cost ofcompanies that are struggling, obviously so important just to the business functioning in general. I was thinking they're about midlevel management. I would guess that you're engaged byprobably executives or senior leadership at some level, but really where this isgoing to be made is probably at the mid midlevel management scenario. Who arethey're hiring, they are daily managing, they're hopefully doing consistent one on onemeetings and a variety of things there. I feel like that's probably when Ithink about the channels available for internal marketing to employees to keep them engaged tohelp make some transformation the way they think about or even behave within the business. That that's got to be one of the most important gateways. It's themost important gateway and that's, you know, across all the work that we've done, all the consulting we've done over the years. I don't care ifyou're talking about sales and marketing or accounting, frontline managers are the single most important, you know group inside, you know most especially large organizations. Theyjust simp there the leverage point right there there. There were, you know, big initiatives and execution. You know, either lives or dies. So we'veseen that across a whole bunch of different engagements that we've done over theyears. Everything we do, all the engagements that we do, we tryto account for the leadership in a really unique way. We try to makesure we can reach that leader on their terms. And just as we're tryingto equip the frontline employee to be a believer in the message so they canbe a good messenger, we also have to do the same thing. Andthis is a big, big waterfall right. The message has to cascade down andman, if it gets down to the frontline leader and stops there,you've got a real challenge. But most organizations, most big organizations especially,are only as good as their frontline leadership team. Yeah, so I seehere this this opportunity to probably run into some resistance. You know, onebad manager could probably ruin it for entire department or team if they are either, you know, speaking out of both sides of their mouth or they justnever get behind the message in the first place. What are some cautions?I mean, obviously what was baked into your last response. There's the ideathat this needs to work for the company, it needs to work for the teamand it needs to work for the individual, and we need to createthat alignment. I mean that is part of the cascade. It needs towork at all levels and be cleared all levels. Where are some other youknow, in terms of overcoming resistance and some of the other things that yourun into an any change, management or transformation process. You have a couplecautions for folks. So I'm going to highlight one example. I've a reallytangible example of what you just described. We have a client who's a nationalhome improvement brand, okay, and we did a brand transfer study with themrecently. We did the readout with their national sales leader and we found somethingreally interesting. Okay, we did it on they're about to roll out anew customer experience initiative. So they're overhauling, completely overhauled the way they engage acustomer, from the way the sales process to the inhome experience to it'scompletely changing. And what we found was senior leadership was very keenly aware ofwhat needed to change, the frontline teams...

...were very keenly aware of what neededto change and the front line leaders made it very clear that they were notinterested in anything changing and if you think about it's very logical and actually ourclient predicted that would happen, and the reason he predict that that was,he said, if you think about front line leaders, frontline leaders are werepromoted to where they are today because they worked well in the current system.So if you introduce variables that take them outside of what helped them get promotedto this point, they learned how to work in the current system to standout and be successful. If you if you introduce new variables, you've justdisrupted their world. You've upset their apple cart, so to speak. Sowhen we think about so, the pitfall there is you create training, andthis is one thing I want to stress. I have no problem with training.I think the training is needed. The challenge is the way it's appliedand the way it's layered. In an organizations. It's typically marketing. Hasa new product, we want people to sell it. We create product trainings. They take it online or its instructor left or they get a one sheet, whatever the case may be. But in most cases that frontline leadership teamis left out of that or they take the same one that their team didand they just sort of glade. I don't need to take this, theyjust kind of click through it. But the reality is there's a whole separateeffort that needs to be focused on them and spoken to them in their language. It's a separate part of the messaging campaign. You need to hit thosefrontline leaders and account for them differently than their frontline teams. So good.I see the very obvious parallels that you've opened up on between tactics that youwould use to market externally and tactics that you would use to market internally.Got To meet people where they are and and show them their unique benefit andvalue in this situation. I'm to change gears briefly and then will I lovemy clothing questions and I'm looking forward to to your answers there. But youearned an MBA from the Fox school of Business and management at Temple and you'vetaught there as an adjunct professor. Just speak for a minute about and anythoughts that occur to you about that, like what's the value of higher edin your opinion, or what are some positive trends you're seeing in customer experienceat that level? Anything you have to share about that? Yeah, soI think I can share one, you know, one pretty direct insight andthe class that I taught at Temple I was leading in complex organizations. Okay, it was. It was sort of a core, core class for thefor the professional NBA program which was the part time professional NBA students, workingadults, and everything we're talking about all traces back to fundamentally sound leadership.I don't care if you're talking about customer experience or marketing or sales or theconcepts, all sort of trace back to the same place. Okay, andyou know, it's sort of goes in conjunction with the previous question about howdo you avoid some of those pitfalls? Well, it's easy to say goodleadership can avoid a lot of these pitfalls. It's not good marketing leadership or goodsales leadership, it's just good leadership. One of the ways that we found, in probably the best way to sort of tie it back in withthe lessons that I taught a temple, is this idea of there's no betterway to change behavior, there's no better way to move people than to movelaterally, not top down. The top down organization is fundamentally poor. Twentyone century leadership methodology. It's just just doesn't work right. We're working inMatrix organizations, you're working with an employee based it's more empowered than they everhave been, or at least they were before a couple of weeks ago.But the organization that can drive change in a matrix influence based way are theones. They are going to be more nimble, more responsive and are goingto have smaller gaps and execution. The delution that we talked about solutions justanother way of saying gap and execution.

So you know that. I wouldsay that's one thing that I in reference to my experience through higher education,is a lot of the challenges that we face right now as marketers and otherwisereally comes back to just fundamentally sound not just leadership, but twenty one centuryleadership really good. The Matrix piece is the key to moving forward. It'sinteresting to think about how many businesses are still operating in a very traditional,tap down manner and I would assume that you would agree with my speculation thatthey're going to struggle to recruit and retain the best people. Not only that, it's we've we work with a lot of companies that are more traditional,the older school type of industries, a lot of manufacturing businesses and things likethat. And you know, one of the things that we found is peoplealways do the blame the millennials game. All it's the millennials or you know, their force in the hand on this it. I always say millennials.All they did was they made it okay to want the things that all employeeswant. They just they just weren't willing to take no for an answer.They wanted to be treated with respect. They believed in a pat on theback is worth as much as as a bonus in your paycheck and in somecases it's worth even more. We know, we've seen. You know, Ihad a gentleman is late s of sales up one time, stand upand say I've got a couple years left doing this and I'm going to goout the right way. The stuff you're talking about. This is the wayI want to leave, this is the way I want to, you know, be as a professional and I'm getting on board because the people, peopleare fundamentally the same, whether they're millennials or boomers, and I just givecredit to millennials for kind of kicking through the door and saying we're not goingto compromise the things that matter to us as individuals really, really good,and I appreciate that so much. We've had a couple of millennial conversations onhere and in on the show, and they typically point back to what youjust shared there, which is they're just regular people too and they're just changingsome of the norms today, which is fantastic. Folks are listening and youenjoyed this conversation. You might also enjoy episode thirty nine with Lanson Levi fromDutch Bros coffee. That one is about company culture as your competitive edge,and one of my earlier conversations with my longtime friend Kurt Bartolich on episode eight. Take care of your brand and it will take care of you. He'sall about brand conservancy and protecting what's good about it. Christopher, before Ilet you go, I'd like to know two things from you. First,is someone who is actually more than two things, but I'd love to giveyou the chance to thank or mention someone who's had a positive impact on yourlife, for your career. Yeah, I appreciate the opportunity to do that, so I'm going to I'm going to take a moment and recognize somebody who'sbecome a really dear friend and mentor to myself and my business partners. Hisname is Dr Frank Sespidis and and Dr sespodus is a senior lecturer at HarvardBusiness School and I want to say with two thousand and fourteen. Two Thousandand fourteen he released a book called Aligning Strategy and sales and we read thearticle in Hbr that was sort of, you know, hyping up the bookand we bought the book right away, like a week after it had comeout, and I sent Dr Sespidus and email at like thirty one night andby thirty I had an email back from him saying I'd love to talk toyou. I you know, sure be happy to find some time. Andand here we are, you know, almost six full years later, andDr Sespitus is helped lead us into we merged a prior practice with it,with another firm that he had some contacts with. He's helped us build thethesis and really see through the beginning of interview as we've sort of taken whatwe knew from the past and started up again. But just very generous withhis time and truly a testament to Harvard business school and the in the horsepower that they have with their faculty there. It's unbelievable, fantastic story. Ireally appreciate that so much. I think so many of us who areconsuming ideas and information, whether it's through podcasts or videos or books or articlesor whatever, are so hesitant, I...

...think, to reach out to people, even when, like I make my email address available on every conversation Ihave. You know what, I'm in your seat and it's so funny howinfrequently anyone takes advantage of it. And you know, just like millennials,are employees with just different norms. You know, these people are just doingtheir own work. They love their work, they're proud of their work, Iwould assume, in most cases, just like we want our employees tobe proud of our companies, in our brands and what we stand for,that so many people are willing to engage. But that's just above and beyond.I love it. How about a company that you really respect for theway they deliver for you as a customer? You know, I always use exampleswhen I'm doing sessions with clients. I always talk about the Nordstrom effect, you know I talked about and I know that's one of the ones thatcomes out frequently. I don't want to be unoriginal, but you know,I look at Nordstrum and say, you know, the exercise that I dois, you know, have a group of employees or leaders in a roomand I'll say, okay, who's ever shopped at Nordstrum? Okay, threecores of the room an it's go up. WHO's ever left in nordstrum and spentless money than they anticipated? No hands go up. Okay, youalways spend more. WHO's ever left in nordstrum unsatisfied? No hands go up. Right. So you know, with that illustrates to me is people don'tneed to apologize for delivering products and services that meet the needs and wants oftheir of their customers. So many times, frontline employees. This is where Italked about the idea of belief. People at Nordstrom really believe that they'redoing you a service. They believe that they're helping you. They believe thatfinding you that right suit and write shirt for that job interview or for thatclient meeting, they really believe they're serving you, not selling you, andthat belief is so critical. So many organizations have people that really rob thecustomer and the company of a larger transaction, a more fruit for relationship, soto speak, because they're not willing to go that extra mile. Thepeople in Orchtrom do and they deliver for their customers. People don't walk awayand feel like they were sold, they walk away and fault like, feellike they were helped. So I'll call out norch from as a brand thatreally seems to do this well. Good one. The the idea of thebelief held and shared by each employee that they are doing something of real valueand it gives a sense of purpose and it gives you that sense of pridethat you've been talking about throughout the conversation, and so that's a great example toend on. Christopher. Someone wants to follow up with you. Theywant to learn more about interview. Where would you send people? Yeah,so you mentioned given the personal email. I'd encourage anybody to reach out tome directly. I am see Wallace Walll Ace at interview group. Now it'sinner as in looking inside, looking at your inner self. I and Erview not like a job interview, but it's interview Groupcom and then another greatplace to find me is linkedin Chris Wallace at interview group in the Philadelphia Area. So I have to caution people. I have a very common name.It's not a rare aim. So if you are looking for me, lookfor interview group and look in Philadelphia, you'll find me. Awesome, Ihave found you there. I'm pleased to be connected. I appreciate your timeso much. Really appreciate what you're doing with interview. It's obviously critically importantand I think it's you know, the more people that you serve, themore satisfied and joyful employees I think we'll have. Well, I appreciate theopportunity and it's been a great conversation. Cool. Thanks so much. Ofcourse, clear communication, human connection, higher conversion, these are just someof the benefits of adding video to the messages you're sending every day. It'seasy to do with just a little guidance. So pick up the official book rehumanizeYour Business. How personal videos accelerate sales and improve customer experience. Learnmore in order today at Bombombcom Book. That's bomb bombcom book. Thanks forlistening to the customer experience podcast. Remember...

...the single most important thing you cando today is to create and deliver a better experience for your customers. ContinueLearning the latest strategies and tactics by subscribing right now in your favorite podcast player, or visit Bombombcom podcast.

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