There was a piece of research from e-consulting that showed CX was perceived to be the most fun area of business to be involved in. Whether you are putting a smile on the customer’s face every day or helping the CEO understand the correlation between fulfilling experiences that matter and profitability, you can see how the argument stacks up. Positive outcomes create contentment all round.
We are involved across all areas of customer experience; helping improve clients’ CX endeavours when others have left things a little unravelled or working up from a blank sheet to create CX strategies which shift a company’s focus from product to customer-centric, right through to designing and building employee engagement board games!
Yes, you read that correctly. I didn’t expect it would be something we would need to do as CX consultants, but now it’s built, clients have played it and improvements have been created, it has become one of our favourite CX activities.
Why a CX board game?
In the early 2010s, the CX game first went live. It came about when we were providing CX support to a leading hotel group. Each of their three hundred-plus hotels received a continuous slice of VoC guest feedback. But it wasn’t always easy to engage employees at each hotel to review and act on what they received.
To engage and create resulting action we devised a format to ensure the hotels received a more ‘digestible’ format they could enjoy reviewing and would work together to create better outcomes for guests.
After some consideration and discussions with specialists in fun, we came up with the board game format evoking childhood memories of fun, relaxation and curiosity – the combination we needed to get different members of staff from across the functions of the hotel to gel together.
The idea being that colleagues from across the hotel could come together (during breaks or team training slots), review the big issues and use the game mechanic to arrive at better outcomes. For the hotel the concept was ‘checking guests in, being served with a problem and then devising solutions based on the proven ideation techniques we provided’.
The solutions would then be approved by other players (representing the guests) and put in to practice at the hotel. The results would be shared with other hotels across EMEA using a shared digital platform.
Over the years since we first played the CX Game in Brussels, we’ve rebranded the CX Game, for several companies including insurers, universities, banks and pharma brands (often without the digital sharing capability). Many have found the game play format perfect for bringing back office colleagues along the CX journey.
So it’s a unique concept format for each company.
The CX Game in summary
- Use clients’ own customer feedback (VoC) data issues (although we can also use award-winning behaviour change data if clients need a reliable data source)
- Include customer facing and back office staff
- Branded game format
- Used to fix specific problems
- Use the same format to create customer or colleague improvements
- Act as a catalyst to create customer personas and customer standards
- Produce actionable and measurable customer improvements
- 1 hour duration to engage colleagues in understanding the value of customer-led thinking
As mentioned, we have also developed and delivered successfully a version for employees who are not connected to the customer. They bring their business challenges instead of customer challenges to the meeting and we use a similar set of techniques to create solutions which customers would approve of. It’s a great way of introducing colleagues from across the business to customer experience. It also serves as a great problem solving format for any team away day.
Game playing time is now referred to ‘SPARK sessions’ following one participants comment that it had at last ignited the connection between their back office role and it’s impact on the end customer. We also run ‘trainer’ sessions with ‘Pass it on’ packs for those attending to take away and cascade the knowledge to their colleagues.
The competitive gaming session intentionally only lasts 60 minutes to keep the energy levels up. This can be accompanied by a ‘The value of CX’ interactive workshop. This introduces participants to the difference between the danger of making functionally better customer experience without incorporating branded distinction.
Customer Standards, the magic ingredient for success with CX
As an extra ingredient, we can use CX behavioural change driver research (award-winning academic research accounting for 90% of customer decision making. These are validated with stakeholders and customers and then designed as an accessible set of Customer Standards to help colleagues prioritise and direct decision-making in favour of achieving the right customer outcomes. This engenders confidence from senior leaders that any decision (internal or external) will be seen as valued by customers, and differentiated to competitors. We have found this is the smartest way to get employees from all areas of the business on-board with branded customer experience.
The outcome is always the same: employees empathise with customers, understand the impact their actions have on customers, take ownership of improving the situation and drive the change through from their role profile.
Clients have expressed their satisfaction with the format and we find it delivers the value of branded CX more effectively than any town hall, video or presentation can. We’ve had some great feedback:
- “Really enjoyed the whole approach – especially important we got to be hands on”
PM Community Manager, Transformation & Change
- “Good interactive sessions had been created to stretch the mind and really think about what customer standards means in your own world”
Interim Head of Internal Communications
- “Very interactive and fun way of learning… quality of materials was very high. Reinforced our responsibility for all being advocates of customer thinking”
Head of Audit
- “I thought the approach was great. A breath of fresh air what with the level of engaging multimedia, inclusive group activity and fun focused on what I found to be a very useful framework. All transformation should aim to be like that.”
Solicitor, Treasury & Corporate Legal
- “I thoroughly enjoyed the session and would encourage the bank to hold more engaging sessions such as this on other topics in the future”
Financial Accountant, Financial Control
- “I really enjoyed the session and gained comfort from the fact that we could all see where we add value to the customer in the work we do”
Analysis & Build Lead, IT Relationship and Change
- “I really enjoyed the sessions …and I want to conduct it for my Teams”
Business Readiness Manager
If this has been of interest, why not find out more?
We can provide the CX Game as a finished product for you to use with your colleagues, or we can facilitate groups from 4-200 gaming sessions or training.
If the Customer Standards are of interest as well, we can share much more on the thinking and the difference applying Customer Standards in Customer Experience can have on the potential for sustained commitment by all to CX. As well as successful formats which have been applied.
For more please information, please contact [email protected]
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Lexden helps deliver effective customer experience insight, strategy, content and creative activation clients seeking sustainable profit from customer experience.