Experiences have become the focal point for many organizations. Over the past 35 years at Continental, I've watched first-hand as the client experience has evolved. 35 years ago it was a big deal to have an actual showroom with a wide selection of productions on display. Clients could literally walk in and shop, often leaving with something tangible in hand that same day. Having a showroom is really a thing of the past for us now, at least in the traditional sense. Gone are the days of those large presentation boards too!
Today, clients are able to come in and actually see how we're utilizing our space and how we work. Furniture, fabric, fixtures, and finishes are presented in a digital application, and we can pull up a screen to take them through a virtual reality experience. It's much more relatable, valuable, and personalized.
Expectations have shifted. Years ago when clients came to our showroom with a short timeline, their options were more limited (think "office in a box"). Today, there are many more quick ship options available, and for a customized space the options are absolutely endless. Although it can take a little longer to customize a space, it's worth the wait. Creativity in the design down to the very details is what elevates the experience. Delivering personalized experiences in real time is a long-term priority for many companies, including ours.
Taking a cross team approach with the customer at the heart of it all means enlisting the support of team members across an organization to ensure a successful client visit. When clients come to visit our space, we want them to get to know us too, and learn how they can leverage the expertise of each team member working on their project. It takes a village. The responsibility doesn't fall on one person. We all have our unique strengths that make us one unified team. We're intentional and purposeful in our preparation and our process, because we want our visitors to have the best experience possible.
My advice is, if you want to do CX and do it well, it should be seamless. This includes your capabilities, logistics, your physical workspace, and your overall cultural environment. Think about the way you want to be treated when you visit a company and bring that to the table. The little touches make a big difference. It's about delighting clients every step of the way, even long after the project is complete.