You won’t succeed as a customer experience (CX) professional if you don’t know your strengths or if your strengths aren’t a good match for the CX challenges facing your organization.

That’s what I learned from my recent research with successful CX professionals. My research uncovered three key findings that are detailed in my report, “How To Succeed As A CX Professional“:

  • Go beyond popular personality tests to understand what you’re naturally good at. To lean into your strengths, you must first know them. If you want to gain an objective understanding of your strengths, go beyond taking popular personality tests. That kind of “office astrology” is fun and interesting, but it relies too much on self-perception. Instead, invite colleagues, friends, and family to help you in conducting a more involved inventory of your true strengths. For example, try using the Reflected Best Self exercise from the Center for Positive Organizations. Or check out the Johari Window to compare your self-perception to what others think your strengths are.
  • Identify whether your organization requires a CX revolution or a CX evolution. Revolutions are fast-paced overhauls, while evolutions create steady, incremental improvements. Both are important. But you must determine which approach your organization needs right now and understand what your organization can handle.
  • Find a way to match your strengths to the situation (and vice versa). Identify what you are good at and lean on those strengths if they fit the situation. Alternatively, change your situation to better match your strengths — for example, by shaping your role differently. Or try finding a role that makes better use of your strengths — possibly even at another company!

Big thanks for sharing your time and insights for this report:

  • Gratia Carver, dept. vice president of customer experience at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City
  • Terry DeKalb, the recently retired associate VP of brand and CX at Agilent
  • Daniel Sasu, vice president of global CX and channel development at Ingredion
  • Andrew Archibald, who served as director of customer experience at Co-op Insurance
  • Jim Pendergast, the recently retired head of AARP experience
  • Luigi Scornaienchi, director of customer experience at Alberta Blue Cross
  • Luis Angel-Lalanne, VP of customer listening at American Express
  • Alex Murphy, who served as senior director, customer and digital experiences at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota
  • Wai Au, who served as global customer experience leader at Sage Software