“Without customers you don’t have a business, you have a hobby.” These famous words by marketing gurus Don Peppers and Martha Rogers are so true: customers form the lifeblood of a company. Today, October 2nd, is ‛Customer Experience' day, or CXDay for short. Time for a short reflection on customer relationships.
To me, passion and idealism are key to running a company. A passion to do not just a good job, but a really great job. A passion to deliver the right solution at the right time to the right customer, thus making customers happy. We work in technology, which is all about hardware, software, bits and bytes. And we all too easily get excited about shiny new tools or emerging technologies. But, in the end, all of us are also human beings with our own personal likes, dislikes and feelings. But when pooled together, that forms the soul of a company.
It’s all about teams
The way we work with customers is summed up clearly in the ‘Teamnology’ concept that Simac recently introduced. Teamnology is a combination of the words ‘team’ and ‘technology’ and stands for solving technological challenges faced by our clients by team playing. Team spirit is something that can never be stressed enough. Inside our company, no one works just by him- or herself, there is always a team around each individual. And taking it a step further, we also form a tight-knit team with our customers. That is perhaps demonstrated best in how our Professional Services division functions: the Simac consultants we embed at a customer location blend in so well that is impossible to tell – for an outsider – whether they are an employee of the customer or of Simac.
Working as a team with the customer also explains why some of our commercial relationships go back 10, 20 or more years. Our clients keep coming back, continuously involving us in projects that are close to the core of their business. Why do they prefer to entertain a long-term relationship with us? Quite simple: we offer them a complete service, delivered by people who are top experts in their field and who go the extra (s)mile in each and every customer engagement. We strive to take away any stress they may have technology-wise. Already in the first meeting that we have with a prospect or a new customer, we try to make it clear they should worry no longer: Simac will fix it. And Simac does!
Happy employees make happy customers
It goes without saying that every company will see it as its mission to deliver a great customer experience. But turning that mission into a reality is no simple task. It is so easy to spend time on operational stuff and internal issues, so focus on the customer always comes first, Always! But as I said, it’s all about passion, and it’s this passion that we are looking for when hiring employees. Of course, we assess people’s technical expertise when they apply at Simac, but we look beyond that. We look for the same passion that defines each Simac team member, and we want people who ask themselves “Did I really make a difference for my customer today?” when they leave for home.
I strongly believe in the concept that happy employees make happy customers. We consider our staff the best ambassadors to our brand, and they are spreading our message throughout the clients’ organizations. Our people know the people at our customers in all the different levels of the organization and that’s another reason why we have this longevity with customers.
Making customers happy is a full-time job. For Management it means giving employees the tools and the time to develop the customer relationship and deliver the best possible solution. It’s about keeping laser-sharp focus on delivering the best possible experience to the customer. Only when a company achieves that, can it really build a future together with the client.