Having a personal relationship with a professional seems to be a normal experience for most people. How often have we heard someone express this in terms of “my doctor”, “my lawyer”, etc.? This is, in fact, a personal ownership of services rendered that is expressed in the customer’s experience (CX). To earn this ownership, the customer surrenders personal information to the professional via an email address or filling out a request form as in medical needs in the expectation of being personally known and served.
In the market-place, customers are looking for what they need in their personal lives, how to live better, how to get the job done, how to feel satisfied. Today’s shoppers are more demanding, because they have easy access with smart phones to do comparative pricing of commodities. It is the consumer who is demanding personal attention; it is the retailer’s responsibility to understand the customer’s needs to meet them with appropriate empathy. This is personalizing the customer’s experience.
Design Thinking, the “brain-child” of David Kelley, CEO of IDEO, outlines how businesses primarily look to process a genuine understanding of a customer’s needs not only for the customer’s satisfaction but also for the experience of “getting the job done” with the company’s product. The customer experience (CX) is at the heart of Design Thinking and its recently developed application, Design Sprint.
Innovative organizations, first and foremost, create and design products and services to fill the unmet needs of their customer. Understanding and empathizing with customers is key to success. Customer needs are ever-changing, which creates an opportunity for continued dialog and understanding of the changing needs, desires, and aspiration of clients. The application of design thinking and creating personalized solutions are a perfect match. This is what drives a business forward. It is innovation at its best, because the personalization of customer experience is new to each customer.