A Quote about the CCO Council from Curtis Bingham
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Curtis on...Key Challenges for CCOs: Implementing Change

Curtis N. Bingham, Founder and Executive Director of the Chief Customer Officer Council, offers his advice for overcoming the resistance to organizational change that challenges not only CCOs, but all executives.


Transcript for Curtis on...Key Challenges for CCOs: Implementing Change

One of the challenges that chief customer officers have is that of implementing change; and this is not just limited to chief customer officers. Implementing change is a challenge no matter where you sit in the organization. Resistance to change is human nature; and especially if you have a mature company with a mature workforce, many people say, “This is just the way we do things around here.”

And yet chief customer officers, when faced with this, recognize that this is one of the biggest elements of their job—to be a change agent. They spend a significant amount of time and effort in trying to change the culture because, clearly, what got us here today is not going to get us there tomorrow.

If you're a chief executive officer, you need to let everybody in your organization know that no more business as usual. As I've said, what got you here today probably won't get you there tomorrow in the face of intense competition and increasingly savvy customers.

You need to champion the customer cause. You need to ensure that everybody knows that customer focus, customer centricity, and customer experience is the new priority and that this is going to be the way in which we grow our companies.

Loan your authority to the chief customer officer. Allow them the air cover. Provide to them the air cover that they need in order to overcome the silos and boundaries. Hold your executives accountable for supporting your chief customer officer.

If you're the chief customer officer, you need to evaluate the organization’s appetite for change and adjust some of your initiatives based on that appetite. If the organization is very resistant to change, you need to start small and start showing some of the changes that you've made and show how significantly better the customer is and the business is as a result of the customer focus.

You need to create the imperative. Show the organization why this is so valuable. The old adage of “what's in it for me” is very true. You need to leverage that and show the organization why it's so important for them to become more customer-focused.
Tell the customer story. Sometimes, there's nothing so powerful as sharing the frustrations and the delights of customers in order to get people to change. You need to engage the employees in the change.

One of the most important things that you can do is to recognize that you can't do it all alone. It's not worth it. You need to find incentives and recognition that motivate employees and get them on board.

Ask them: What is it that's preventing you from delivering outstanding customer service?


"At SAVO, we are dedicated to our customers' success. We have organized our teams around it, developed programs to promote it, and we measure ourselves based on their success. I look forward to working with other members of the council to explore innovative ways to drive the imperative
of customer success to
the forefront of an
strategic initiatives."

Brian Study
SAVO Group