Creating a Customer-Centric Culture

Real transformation is hard work. It begins with careful preparation, vision, leadership alignment, building a cohort of change agents, and organizational readiness. Territory partnered with this forward-thinking public utility client to build an ambitious program to create a customer-centric culture.

The energy industry is undergoing rapid change as advancing technologies and methods of energy distribution redefine the role utilities play in serving customer needs. Increasing customer expectations and market competition are driving the need for transformation in order to continue to be relevant, sustainable, and competitive.

Our client sought to increase its customer-centric focus and improve upon the experience it provides to customers who entrust the organization with their energy needs. The engagement objective was to embark on a transformation program to reemphasize the importance of customer experience to its employees, and to demonstrate how much the organization values its customers.

Developing a customer-centric culture requires empowering every employee to act as a true customer advocate—collaborating to create a proactive—not reactive—cultural mindset.

Here are the program goals:

  • Collaborate with leaders to build a clear vision for the  transformation program, based on a clarion call to action.
  • Develop a roadmap that illustrates the path and milestones for the entire organization.
  • Identify and articulate the cross-functional governance and process for field-ready, experiential-based, employee-driven learning focused on facilitating organizational transformation.
  • Reduce customer friction and improve the customer experience so that employees develop strong customer relationship competencies, enabling the utility to thrive in an increasing competitive marketplace.

The customer experience learning and transformation strategy was crafted to cultivate a customer-centric culture that permeates from line employees and phone operators to the top levels of management and leadership. Designed with three phases, it’s an engagement formula based upon established and proven change management practices: PREPARE, EXECUTE, and REINFORCE. This fast start engagement is currently in the PREPARE phase, with the next two phases beginning in earnest once the program’s vision and goals are finalized by the client’s leadership team.

 

Elements of phase 1, PREPARE include:

Facilitated leadership alignment

We facilitated an immersive remote experience to gather input and feedback and gain alignment on the transformation’s case for change, vision, and roadmap.

Initiation and support of change coalition engagement

Announcing the intentions of the program and enlisting a cohort of volunteer change agents throughout the organization.

Building leadership readiness and a supporting toolkit

Creation of a compelling case for change, a vision, and a roadmap to be used to rally the organization around the transformation.

Assembly and empowerment of change agent cohorts

Launching the program using extensive communications, small group meetings and discussions, and the supporting tool-kit.

Development of customer-centric learning courses

Creating an understanding of what it means to be customer-centric and embed behavioral change in the organization.

 

Below are some of the facilitation and visualization tools used in the PREPARE Phase:

PREPARE Phase Approach

 

Learning Program Elements

 

This exciting program is in its infancy but is already sparking real change, showing early results in reducing customer friction and creating customer advocates. What is evident is that when the full force of the learning courses are added to this transformation, it will accelerate outcomes and build momentum for creating the desired customer-centric culture.

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