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Each week, I read many customer service and customer experience articles from various resources. Here are my top five picks from last week. I have added my comment about each article and would like to hear what you think too.

Speed Doesn’t Equal Success: The Limitations of AHT as a KPI by Othmar Mueller Von Blumencron

(VIPdesk Connect) While top-notch products and services remain vital, the spotlight in recent years has undeniably shifted to the customer experience as a pivotal factor distinguishing one brand from another. In an age where products and services are often similar, it’s the memorable and positive interactions that truly distinguish one brand from another. My Comment: For those in the customer support world, this article is for you. AHT, as in average handle time, is a metric used to measure the average length of time for a customer support call. Some companies look for low AHTs, hoping to manage more calls per hour or shift with a lower time. Two areas not typically considered in this metric, should be. The first is from the customer’s experience. How long did they have to wait to get through? The customer’s AHT includes hold time and time on the phone with the agent. Then, from the agent’s perspective, what notes and other tasks happen after the call? So, if you look at the total AHT, it includes wait time, phone time, and task time.

Total experience transformation: Five strategies for a seamless customer and employee experience by Ron Shamah

(Fast Company) Employee and customer experiences have an inherent overlap—one does not exist without the other. My Comment: The opening line of this article grabbed me: “It’s no secret that customer experience (CX) and employee experience (EX) are inextricably connected.” And then there’s the second sentence: “According to a Harvard Business Review article, employee experience is the key driver of customer experience…” Then, don’t miss the fifth tip on how technology can waste a massive amount of your employees’ time.

Why you need an exceptional customer service strategy (and how to develop one) by Ronnie Gomez

(Sprout Social) In this article, we’ll go over a step-by-step breakdown of how to develop a customer service strategy that’s both memorable and efficient. Plus, we gathered two examples from brands that are creating stellar customer experiences at scale. My Comment: Sometimes it’s important to get back to basics, which is why I included this excellent article that includes, stats, tips, and more about creating a customer service strategy. And if you haven’t gone through the formal strategy process, the five-step “framework” provided is an excellent place to start.

How to improve Customer Loyalty and win over shoppers by Patrick Overall

(The Retail Bulletin) We know it might seem a bit too early to be thinking about it, but, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and the holiday season is just around the corner. So, what better time to cultivate some customer loyalty so you can supercharge your sales towards the end of the year? My Comment: What I’m about to write may lead you to believe I don’t like this article. I do like it, but I think it is more about creating a customer loyalty program focused more on repeat business than true loyalty. There is nothing wrong with that! If you want loyal customers, you have to get them to experience you more than once, and giving them an incentive to come back (in the form of points, perks, rewards, etc.) is an excellent way to do so. As you read this article, keep that in mind.

How to Manage Big Changes Well in the Contact Centre by Dr. M. Dave Salisbury

(Call Centre Helper) Here are 17 top tips for managing big changes well in the contact center. My Comment: Are you making changes in your contact center (or plan to)? If so, read this article. Several customer service experts, including myself, were called upon to comment on how to introduce change to your employees in a contact center.


Top 5 Customer Experience Keynote Speakers to Book in 2024 by Chalmers Brown

(CustomerThink) In this curated list of can’t-miss speakers, we spotlight CX trailblazers who have captivated audiences worldwide. From memorable anecdotes to actionable insights, these speakers are reshaping the contemporary CX landscape. Consider one of these five CX thought leaders for your next event if your priorities include up-leveling your organization’s customer engagement, retention, and advocacy. My Comment: I’m honored to make this list: Top Five Customer Experience Keynotes Speakers to Book in 2024! What an honor. Thank you, Chalmers Brown, for including me. And what a great group to be a part of! Shep Hyken is a customer service/CX expert, award-winning keynote speaker, and New York Times bestselling author. Learn more about Shep’s customer service and customer experience keynote speeches and his customer service training workshops. Connect with Shep on LinkedIn.

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