The Paradox of Customer Expectations: How Companies Can Align Employee Compensation with Experience Metrics to Satisfy Customers

The Importance of Customer Science for CIOs

In today’s interconnected world, meeting or exceeding customer expectations is crucial. One tweet from Kylie Jenner can cost a company $1.3 billion in market value, and US companies lost $1.6 trillion in 2016 due to poor service. The paradox of not having someone in the enterprise with the authority to ensure every interaction meets or exceeds expectations highlights the need for positions such as the chief customer officer or chief experience officer to address this issue.

Glenn Laverty, former president and CEO at Ricoh Canada, resolved this paradox by tying every employee’s compensation to customer experience/satisfaction metrics. This approach has become increasingly popular in aligning everyone’s compensation with customer experience metrics in a calibrated and nuanced way.

However, measuring and rewarding certain behaviors is not always straightforward. For example, at Boeing, production throughput compensation metrics were prioritized over safety considerations, leading to unintended consequences. Claes Fornell, founder of the American Customer Satisfaction Index, points out the data paradox in customer science: despite collecting vast amounts of customer data, organizations seem to know less about how to satisfy their customers. Addressing this disconnect between data collection and customer satisfaction is crucial for truly understanding and meeting customer expectations.

Leave a Reply