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Solving for All Sides

Posted on March 16, 2011 , by cxjen
CATEGORIES: Lessons Learned

Recently I had the privilege of accompanying my 11-year-old to the Cube-A-Palooza speed-cubing contest at Stanford University, hosted by its Educational Programs for Gifted Youth (EPGY) group.

I was truly awestruck at the abilities of the kids at the competition – all 45 boys and girls participating in the 3×3 event solved the cube in less than three minutes, with the Final Round winner averaging a mere 11.08 seconds!

But never mind the speed aspect; to me, simply solving all six sides simultaneously is impressive enough alone.  A child of the eighties, I toyed with the Rubik’s Cube® during its original heyday prior to the advent of YouTube and the popular home-grown “how to” tutorials that taught my son his techniques.  No matter how hard I tried, the extent of my success was a single side solved like the photo above.

In my opinion, a Customer Experience Program driven by one aspect alone produces the same sort of effect: a partial solution addressing only a fraction of the whole.  As with the pictured cube, if after solving the first face you were to then go focus your attention on solving a second side, your subsequent success would inevitably come at the expense of your first outcome.

An effective Customer Experience Program is one that is multi-faceted in both its data collection and its reach.  With email survey response rates as dismal as they can be nowadays, it is especially important to temper that survey data with intelligence from customer visits, phone calls, letters, interviews, customer conferences, advisory boards, and – in some instances – even social media. 

So far as its scope of influence goes, nice as it is to have a stand-alone effort in a single department, it’s only when you have a program that addresses all the gaps between touchpoints that the end-to-end experience can truly be considered.  One thing I’ve learned is that so much of what needs attention is in the transitions – if you are only solving for one side you will be very lucky to positively impact the others.  More likely you’ll scramble them!

~ Jen Maldonado