Reflections
Your Customer Experience Begins with Sales
Last week I spoke with the team at SAP Insider about the importance of the customer experience and the article with my interview can be found here . Many companies focus a great deal of time and careful attention on crafting their “customer experience,” yet I’m consistently surprised at how rarely sales is considered as part of that experience. The fact is, if the sales experience is bad, there isn’t likely to be a customer experience. If you are serious about creating a powerful customer experience (or “CX” as it’s often referred to), you need to be diligent about how it starts.

That means designing the sales experience as thoughtfully as you do the rest of the customer experience. What value that you expect to create for prospects and customers? How will they experience their first interactions with your team? Will they be able to easily understand the problems or needs you may help them solve? How will potential customers benefit from the expertise resident in your sales team? How will your sales team differentiate your company from competitors and demonstrate your firm’s superior qualities to become a trusted partner?

Ensuring you have a clearly defined approach for a valuable sales experience and making sure your people have the skills to deliver that experience are game-changing when it comes to profitable growth. Nothing will have a greater impact on the future value of your business. Setting the tone for your CX starts with sales.
You may find my interview in  "A Customer-First” World, don’t Let Sales Get Lost in the Shuffle”with  SAP insider  to be useful. I spoke with the Customer Experience Management team about the characteristics of a successful CRM implementation. You may find this article valuable.
A Slice of Life Balance
Stress is really a veneer for fear. It’s seems stronger to admit to being stressed than afraid of something. But when you feel stressed, what you’re actually experiencing is fear. Fear that something will or won’t happen, or perhaps that nothing will happen. There are plenty of good ways to counteract stress, from exercise to rest, but one of the most powerful is to ask yourself what you are really afraid of. Dig deep, find the source of that stress, and work on the roots. If you can name the fear, you’re more likely to conquer it.