Microsoft talks a lot about the "People Ready Business". I think the message behind this is a very strong one, but sometimes gets diluted as just a marketing campaign.

Seth does a great job in underlining the importance of each and every individual in building and maintaining a customer engagement.

"The operator, who couldn't have been nicer, offered me a coupon for a free replacement bar.

A replacement of what? More of the same mediocre product I was calling to complain about?

Of course, she was just doing her job, but who's fault is that? Who decided to give her nothing but a script, who decided not to take the inbound calls seriously,  who decided that it made sense to put up a wall instead of opening a door? I guess the short version is, 'why isn't the brand manager answering the phone?'"

There are a lot of factors to making an organization truly effective at delivering a fantastic customer experience at every level (product, brand, human-human etc). A critical component is giving people the right tools to do this.

Even if the operator Seth spoke to wanted to deliver a more meaningful response, could she? Could she have said:

"Thank you for your feedback Seth. What we were trying to achieve with this bar was X. I will feed this back to <individual Y>. Perhaps you would like to try this alternative product which better fits the description of your tastes. I see you write a blog, perhaps you like the new energy bar just for people like you who are up late at night on their PC!

I'll be sure to take a look at your new book also."

All of this information is available somewhere. A Business Productivity Infrastructure is just the plumbing needed to deliver that information to the right place at the right time.

 

Seth's Blog: Who answers the phone?