It’s been a number of weeks since my last post and I keep meaning to write, but inevitably something else gets in the way. Poor excuse I know! This was going to be the year when I write more, well more often at any rate. And as January draws to a close I’ve still yet to write anything. But I’ve been reading. I’ve been reading countless predictions for 2016.

  • I’ve been reading how contact centres must go digital.
  • I’ve been reading how instant messaging is the future. I think the same post was written back in 2008 saying that Twitter was the future, and that contact centres and publishing would disappear.
  • I’ve been reading that Artificial Intelligence is the future.
  • I’ve been reading that cognitive is the future.
  • I’ve been reading that Facebook, Twitter, and Google will become the customer service platforms of the future.

I’ve been reading…

But what I’ve come to realise through this reading is how much of a company’s customer service strategy and thinking is determined and influenced, not necessarily by doing what is right for the customer, but by the prevailing technology and associated operational requirements of the day.

Getting consumed by what technology exists, although interesting, misses the point. To focus on Twitter, Facebook, WhatsApp, Snapchat forces the discussion to be about that specific technology. And whenever another new technology disrupts, another specific discussion needs to take place. But if organisations could rise above discussing the name, and simply talk about the type or characteristics of that disruptive media the discussion is immediately taken to a different place. The name becomes less important.

But regardless of the cultural, technological, governance, regulatory or organisational challenges posed by Twitter, Facebook, going digital, WhatsApp, getting it right for your customers should be the number one priority. Getting it right, or perhaps making it ‘more relevant’, for your customers, should form the basis of your strategy, not what technology you need to do so.

And the problem with focusing your efforts on the technology, is that what you’re just trying to do is to fit Twitter, Facebook and Instant Messaging into a model that was relevant and meaningful to a time that is rapidly disappearing. You’re trying to fit the very technology into the very model that it is trying its best to disrupt. Please tell me that you realise this!

Anyway, let’s see what happens in January 2017…