Brief Reminder - Let's Not Forget the Deliverable!
Fellow Canadian Michael Falcon makes a whole lot of sense in this brief article that reminds us to seek the yin for our exceptional customer experience yang - namely, exceptional products. If the customer doesn't want what we've got, well we can experience them til the bells ring, but still not sell. Yup, that's right, don't throw the product/solution out with the customer experience bathwater!
Flashcards - They're Back! (Or Maybe They Never Left...)
In a very different job opportunity from what I had previously been doing, I found myself required to master a great deal of terminology quickly - and to be examined on it. I was in my early 30s, out of school for several years, and never strong on memorization. I hunted online, and purchased a "flash card" software for my Windows PC - and proceeded to use it extensively to memorize the new lingo. All turned out well, and I still respect the power of flashcards. The infographic in this article is helpful because it actually explains why flashcards can work - and for what types of learners. Now, with phones and tablets, it is more feasible than my Windows-based tool of many moons ago - and it still makes sense where memorization or prompting for response will be required in testing.
Hooray for HTML5 in e-Learning!
This short article, in the TrainingZone, highlights the use of HTML5 as a critical technology in modern e-learning. Certainly, vendors of e-learning products have moved en masse to get on trend with this - quite simply, HTML5 is a requirement in e-learning production today given the forced golden years of Flash-based technologies. This article makes what I believe is a strange case for the use of web content management tools as the foundation for building e-learning programs in HTML5 - for whatever reason, that just seems like a mismatch, and that we need something more screen-based for e-learning (vs the traditional CMS). I personally am fascinated by projects such as H5P and Adapt, and was really impressed with the DZSlides project... and I think we will see even more evolution along those lines, outside of CMS offerings. We need powerful yet easy-to-use interfaces to replicate the slide/screen experience usually associated with e-learning, and we need good tools to make e-books that can leverage themselves into digital job aids. Stay tuned as the technology emerges - we're in for an interesting ride.
Customer Journey Mapping - A Primer on the Basics
Guiding Star's first forays into customer journey mapping quickly led to interesting dilemmas about things like sample size for validation of maps and map visualization (i.e., what will a map look like). There certainly aren't many standards yet out there for those interesting questions. But it likely should be argued that what's truly important is to do it - to map customer journeys across an organization, to map business processes, etc. The goal is to understand touchpoints with customers and stakeholders and improve what happens across the journey in a conscious fashion. This article does a nice, although top-level, job at introducing the concept of a customer journey map, and tackles some of the big questions about why, what, and how. I'm hoping readers from the learning realm can also see the wisdom in creating learning or learner journey maps, a derivation from the customer journey map for which Guiding Star has been an instigator and pioneer. On journey mapping - stay tuned, Guiding Star plans a big announcement about relevant technologies this spring!
Practical Ways to Enhance Customer Experience
Sometimes, things just aren't obvious. In this article in the Guardian, the author highlights some "Captain Obvious" moments of truth in the customer experience - as in, make it easy for your customers to find you. There are a few gems in here, mind you - like personalizing appreciation post-purchase, and skipping the faux-reward for something more compelling. At the end of the day, a thoughtful team, provided with resources to make a difference, will give you a substantial competitive advantage.
IHOP Does a Sweet Job - Creating Customer Love
As a Canadian, I don't have nearly enough access to breakfast. What they serve - sweet and greasy goodness - is just a treat each time I'm visiting the United States, and I admit I actively seek out IHOP. What I didn't realize is that IHOP has a robust customer experience platform with a goal to secure customer love and word of mouth marketing. Their program has short-, medium- and long-term goals and respective measures, all of which address a goal to create a consistent dining experience. As this article explains, IHOP has implemented measurement processes which prompt review of people performance, experience perception, quality and consistency. These domains seem totally appropriate for great customer experience metrics.