When the company was just a few years old, tech mega-giant Google penned an article on their company’s philosophy: “Ten things we know to be true.” And, as they suggest on their current About page, they continually check-in to ensure they are holding themselves accountable to these core values they started the company on. In fact, they even encourage their clients to hold them accountable to these core values, as well. And while Google is by no means a perfect organization, this is one of the main reasons why it, to us, is an extremely respectable company. It holds and in fact delivers the business’s core values to the extent that customers now know it to be one of the most reputable tech companies world-wide.
Certainly, having core values is crucial to positioning an organization in relation to their customers/clients. But writing them on a website or in a statement that attempts to backtrack on negative press can only get you so far.
So, how can you deliver your business’s core values in a way that fosters a meaningful and lasting relationship between you and your clients/customers? And what skills do you need to do so?
This week, we have business consultant and customer experience expert Jaime Marco to thank for helping us discover the answers we offer below!
How to Deliver Your Business’s Core Values
As countless team leaders, business owners, and entrepreneurs do on a regular basis, this week, our marketing coordinator Lara sat down with Jaime Marco, owner of Evolve Business Consulting to ask about what it takes to thrive as a business in such a rapidly changing marketplace.
To answer this question, Marco draws upon the most common experiences of being served in a restaurant.
You enter the restaurant, she suggests, and a host asks you how many members are in your party and seats you at an appropriate table. Then, the server takes your order and delivers your food. Occasionally, they check on how the meal is going. They offer dessert and tea or coffee. Then, they bring you the bill. This is them serving you.
Taking the next step in customer service, in this case, as Marco suggests, is taking that little step further to make the service rather an experience.
And turning an ordinary service into an extraordinary experience, she offers, requires not just having but in fact delivering the core values an organization holds near and dear to them. After all, it’s not enough to want to offer core values that speak to your clients/customers.
So, how does one do so? Having been a coach and customer experience consultant for many years, Marco can attest that there really is no one-size-fits-all solution to delivering core values. The actions required, of course, vary widely between industries and clientele.
But it all starts, Marco suggests, with asking yourself the following question: what do you want that experience to be like for the people that experience your business?
Key Skills That Can Improve Your Customer Experience
1. Personal development
Personal development, despite its phrasing, is not actually only about one’s own development. In fact, it heavily impacts how you deliver your services and/or products to your customers.
As Marco offers, “in order to be helping other people, you have to be personally developing yourself, as well.”
Of course, personal development can look very different from one individual to another, even within the same organization. But in many instances, this requires:
1. reflecting on your current areas of success and areas for improvement
2. specific, manageable, and impactful goals that you can set for yourself, and
3. finding ways to enact these goals that also hold you accountable to them.
This might mean checking in with coworkers with whom you collaborate regularly, or even checking in regularly with clients to ensure you’re consistently meeting and perhaps even exceeding their expectations and needs.
Marco has a great blog post on the Evolve Business Consulting website wherein she quotes Socrates’s famous lines: “The only thing I know is that I know nothing.”
That is, certainly, as Marco suggests, you should know a few things, like your products/services, your clients, your carriers and vendors, your policies and procedures. But, as Marco further suggests, don’t forget to express and maintain humility in your practice.
This is crucial for delivering your core values as an organization and delivering a great customer experience.
Namely, humility is crucial for ensuring your organization is always prioritizing the needs and preferences of their customers without anyone’s ego getting in the way.
In fact, demonstrating humility can help foster a deeper and more meaningful relationship between the customer and allow their needs to come through more clearly. It can further allow the organization to open up to feedback that can address crucial areas for improvement.
Humility also, of course, allows the customer to feel trusting of the organization and thus, more comfortable and willing to rely on the organization for fulfilling their needs/wants.
3. Empathy and customer-relatability
Lastly, in addition to understanding your customer’s needs and wants and building trust with them, in order to really exceed expectations with your products/services, you’ll need to exercise your empathy and relatability.
That is, you’ll need to build rapport, reward loyalty, and even de-escalate conflict to ensure your customer feels appreciated and valued as an individual. This, naturally, will bring them back time and again, even when it’s more convenient to go elsewhere.
“The relationships you’re building today,” Marco asserts, “will not only impact you today but will continue to impact you moving forward.”
And, of course, it should go without saying that this skill, along with the above two, are those that you cannot simply enact in a one-time situation. You need to be exercising these skills regularly.
As Marco asks, “how do you take [your] intention and make [an] impact? The choice is yours. And you choose that every day.”
Special thanks to Jaime Marco for the expert advice featured in this blog post. If you’re looking for a business consultant with experience in working with large corporations to small businesses in various industries, check out Evolve Business Consulting at www.evolvethebusiness.com. As well, feel free to reach out and connect with Marco herself over on LinkedIn!
If you have expert advice you’d like to offer us and be featured in a blog post like this one, let us know! Leave a comment on our latest LinkedIn post letting us know what expert advice you have to share.
We can’t wait to connect with you!