Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Putting Ourselves in Customers' Shoes

By Ingrid Lindberg
Chief Customer Experience Officer
Prime Therapeutics

It’s one thing to talk about customer experience. It’s another to experience it. At Prime Therapuetics, we’ve taken a unique approach to helping our employees see through our customer’s eyes: The Customer Experience Room.
When employees walk into the Customer Experience Room, they choose a persona for the journey. They are encouraged to think like "Jay" or "Stacy." As employees walk through the “current experience" part of the room, they listen to real calls. They see real feedback from customers and read actual letters Prime has sent. This exposure puts things into a different perspective. 
Stations in the “current experience" are designed to show how everyone at Prime plays a part: from customer service agents on the phone to the people who write member letters, from website engineers to clinical experts, and from product developers to the pharmacists in each of our pharmacies. Sure, not all of these employees are on the front line with members. But because people are the focus of everything we do, each of us must learn to put ourselves in our members’ shoes. 
The experience of seeing things through members' eyes reveals the connection between the work our employees do and the people we serve. Once this connection becomes clear, it's easy to see that each and every employee plays a part in making our customers’ experiences better.
The “future experience" side of the Customer Experience Room asks employees to think outside the box about how they can do their part. Is it sounding friendlier on the phone? Is it avoiding jargon in letters? Maybe it’s a website that’s easier to navigate? Or a single point of contact for Prime? This second part of the Customer Experience Room highlights the things we’ve already started doing, and builds excitement about the things we’re striving to do in the future.
Once Prime employees have explored the future of customer experience, they’re asked to sign a promise wall. By signing the wall, employees promise to “obsess about our members’ needs and do what is right for them.”
At Prime, our purpose is to help people get the medicine they need to feel better and live well. We could stop at just helping our customers get their medicine. We could choose not to think about the process or how they’re treated. But we don’t. Instead, we put ourselves in our members' shoes and strive to make their experience the best it can be.
This article originally appeared on Prime Therapeutics’ Industry Insights blog.
About the Author
As chief customer experience officer at Prime Therapeutics, Ingrid C. Lindberg is responsible for developing and overseeing the implementation of the enterprise customer experience strategy, which addresses all matters related to how Prime engages and serves its customers. Her role within Prime is the first of its kind within the pharmacy benefit management industry and has been created to ensure Prime’s customers have the best pharmacy experience possible and that the voice of the customer is a driver within the decision making processes at Prime. Lindberg was presented with a Direct Marketing News 40 Under 40 Award in 2013 and was named a 40 Under Forty honoree by the Hartford Business Journal in 2011. Ingrid speaks at national conferences and is heavily quoted by top publication including the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Atlanta Constitution Journal, and Kiplingers. Follow her on Twitter at @iclindberg

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