“To be innovative you have to learn to be comfortable with some level of ‘maybe.’ ”
– Beth Comstock, TaskUs CX Summit Speaker & Author of Imagine it Forward
When Beth Comstock, former vice chair of GE, took the stage on a sunny NYC morning last week - I knew attendees at TaskUs’ CX Summit were in for a day of meaningful dialogue.
Customer experience was the theme, but learning to adopt technologies and forecast trends fueled conversation. Throughout the day, CX leaders across various industries sat in on panels, brainstormed and invested in a future built by imagination and sealed with action. Whether you attended or missed CX Summit NYC, here are five big takeaways you can apply to your organization:
Stay Ahead of Trends with Pattern Recognition - or "Notes on 3"
The key to finding trends early is noticing them before they’re common knowledge. One speaker noted that when you notice an interesting occurrence - mark it as an early trend the third time you hear about it. For instance, say you hear a person in a cafe noting how “Impossible meat will be on fast food menus in 2030” or “in five years, customers will be able to buy CBD treats for their dogs” - pay attention. Write it down. The minute you hear it again, cross it off. The third time, recognize a pattern and utilize the knowledge gained.
"Maybe" is a Strength, Not a Weakness
When thinking about innovation in the world of customer experience - saying “maybe” isn’t a sign of weakness. It’s a symbol of humility and emotional intelligence - both necessities in a great customer experience. “No” may actually mean “not yet” - not the death of an idea. A few speakers noted how an allegiance to rigid logic is actually the antithesis of creativity and understanding how to solve a problem in a new way. The best way to help your team overcome this? Write each person a permission slip to explore an idea that feels like a risk. Find your most mature customer and dress rehearse the idea - then improve it for a wider adoption, if it's successful.
Automation Fails Without Human Sentiment
Multiple speakers at CX Summit were passionate about the importance of conquering the fears around AI. A big misconception is that AI alone holds the power to solve customer’s problems. In fact one speaker noted, “It’s actually not “AI vs. Human” - it’s a mixture of both.” Understanding that human sentiment and judgments are necessary in order to widely adopt machine learning and AI, such as chatbots, will significantly improve your CX strategy.
Most companies have widely adopted chatbots as part of their support strategy. In fact, in a 2018 TaskUs CX predictions poll, over 50% of respondents noted they are currently using chatbots. However at a panel at CX Summit, when a speaker asked how many people were happy with their chatbots, no one actually raised their hand. Why? Perhaps the reason why is to understand the limitations of pure automation. Companies that offer a blended option for support intertwined with both machine and human elements perform better with customers. The reason? These models offer the efficiency of data processing with the emotional quotient of human interaction.
Natural Modalities Will Win
How do customers behave in their personal lives? Why should there be a radically different model in their interactions with companies they purchase from? One speaker noted how the future of CX relies not on necessarily reinventing the wheel- but understanding the wheel better. For example, if an airline customer were able to change their seat through a text message (ie: can I change my seat to a window?) ideally a carrier could text them a photo of the seat map and confirm their choice - all through the natural modality of text. Preventing customers from additional steps (logging into an airline website, clicking through to a seat map before check-in) may be the breakthrough of the future.
Diversity of Thought Matters
Picking a diverse CX team early on can be a barometer of success or failure. In one session, a speaker asked the audience to imagine their team as a single unit dependent on joint elements to thrive. Those elements stem from people of varying backgrounds, experiences, education levels and cultures– all bound by a complementary method of working toward a singular goal.
What else did our attendees think? Here’s Chef Omnichelli with additional insight from her CX sous chefs:
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