Create A Customer-Obsessed Growth Engine To Thrive In Tough Times

Today, the world is more challenged than ever as a series of health, environmental, socioeconomic, and geopolitical crises have pushed uncertainty to extreme levels. This systemic disorder and uncertainty exposed a lack of customer focus in many organizations. Amid these challenges, customer experience (CX) programs are at a critical inflection point: We predict that one out of five CX teams will disappear. Forrester’s annual predictions dig into what we expect to play out in more detail.

The current upheavals, risks, and disruptions are the perfect catalyst for change. To thrive in the future, your strategy can’t just be downsizing and cost-cutting. You must be bold and create a customer-obsessed growth engine, an engine that maximizes value for customers to generate value for the business. And to power this growth engine, you need to bring people and processes together to achieve shared goals, just like the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) did in its quest to see a black hole.

Wait, what? (Please indulge me … if you’ve seen any of my keynotes, you definitely know I have a keen interest in astrophysics.)

Despite all odds, in April 2019, the EHT revealed the first image of a ring of superheated gas spiraling into a black hole at the center of a galaxy 55 million light years away. It turns out that astronomers would have needed a telescope bigger than the Earth to take that picture. Of course, they didn’t manage to build that. What they managed to build was a worldwide network of eight telescopes thanks to the collaboration of over 200 scientists from 18 different countries, a testament to what we can accomplish when we bring bold, focused minds together to make the seemingly impossible possible.

You clearly need strong alignment to see a black hole. You also need strong alignment to deliver CX that drives business results. This is because the quality of CX that your organization delivers depends on a complex ecosystem of interlocking parts all working together — not just within the four walls of our organizations (different functional teams such as CX, marketing, digital, product, and operations) but also across the entire value chain, both upstream (e.g., supplier) and downstream (e.g., contact center business process outsourcing or distribution partners).

Join Us In Sydney Or Digitally For Hands-On Guidance And Face-To-Face Networking Opportunities

We are well into content production for CX APAC 2023, and this concept of a customer-obsessed growth engine as the answer to tough times is core to how we built out the agenda. We’ve called it “Bold Focus.” Our keynotes will explore three linked topics:

  • First, I will show you how to turn empathy into fuel for your growth engine by exploring strategies and tactics that you can use to put yourself in the shoes of customers, employees, and senior leaders.
  • Next, Maxie Schmidt-Subramanian will reveal insights on how customers get value, what customers value, and the bold moves you’ll need to make to secure your organization’s role in customers’ value networks.
  • Lastly, Rick Parrish will explain how the old reliable distinctions among customer lifecycle phases are evaporating and how you can prepare your organization to serve and retain customers more quickly, reliably, and efficiently than ever.

Our tracks will build on these concepts, with speeches, hands-on “learn a skill” sessions, practitioner stories, and networking for CX, B2C marketing, and digital leaders to delve deeper and meet both Forrester analysts and peers. Forrester subject matter experts will inspire you to action with our newest and boldest research, including:

  • Vasupradha Srinivasan will explain how customer service is a key driver for CX and how you can rally your customer service people, processes, and technology to contribute and influence organizational CX objectives.
  • Zhi Ying Barry will show you how to build next–generation experiences by making smart technology decisions that are attuned to what the technology can reasonably deliver and what consumers expect and will use.
  • Maxie Schmidt-Subramanian will provide insights into the state of CX measurement practices and offer you tools and techniques to improve your CX measurement program.
  • Xiaofeng Wang will explain how to embed ethical marketing throughout every stage of the customer lifecycle, including helping customers discover your products and services with awareness campaigns, using ethical marketing elements such as product responsibility and price transparency, and building a community to let them advocate for your brands.
  • Simone Briggs will reveal how an Australian government organization is investing in elevating its CX culture to offer more support to tourism operators and become customer-obsessed before its “final exam” in 2032. (Can you guess who I’m talking about?!)
  • Tom Mouhsian will show you how you can sustain your digital transformation by harnessing your full internal potential and combining it with the best mix of external partners and experts in an interconnected ecosystem that continuously collaborates, co-creates, and delivers new value.

Join Forrester’s flagship CX event in APAC on the 25th and 26th of May 2023 at the Sydney Hilton. I hope to see you there.

PS — Can’t travel to Sydney? Join us online! You can consume all the presentations from our speakers on demand.

PPS — Stay tuned for my next blog about two trailblazing industry speakers who will share best practices and the challenges they had to overcome in their organizations to drive customer obsession.