Insights|Why Perfection is the Enemy of Innovation in CX

Why Perfection is the Enemy of Innovation in CX

A focus on perfection may actually be stopping organizations from delivering on their brand promise.

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by Sitel staff October 29, 2020 - 3 MIN READ

The past six months have been a monumental wake-up call for any consumer-facing organization.

In addition to the challenges of meeting existing customer expectations while operating under government imposed restrictions, 2020 has highlighted the difficulties many brands face in pivoting from multichannel to omnichannel because they have failed to form a genuine partnership with their customer experience (CX) provider. 

Change is the only constant in today’s business world. New technological breakthroughs, customer discoveries that develop into trends, new tools that unlock processes improvement; each is a step forward presenting a challenge for which organizations have historically looked to their BPO suppliers to overcome.

Watch Mike Small’s full keynote here.

Understanding the Possibilities

However, as Mike Small, CEO – Americas, Sitel Group, makes abundantly clear in his keynote at this year’s EmpowerCX, the key to meeting these challenges and moving forward, even in these most uncertain of times is about partnership, sharing risk and in doing so creating an environment where innovation thrives. 

 “COVID-19 has supercharged the digital disruption already underway in every single sector we support,” says Small. “Even the brands most resistant to change have gotten a glimpse of the possible.”Sitel Group itself has been no exception in this respect. COVID-19 has presented an opportunity to fully pressure test and then demonstrate how our antifragile mindset empowers an organization to move quickly and decisively. Since March, this business philosophy has been key in overcoming the challenges of the pandemic while continuing to partner with clients to meet their CX needs even as they changed.

Seeing the Big Picture 

Yet, more importantly, 2020 has also been a catalyst for further innovation and further contemplation of the big picture – the nature of and future direction of managing and delivering CX.

“We’ve reflected on the concept of antifragility,” explains Small. “It’s vital to the success and future of the customer experience outsourcing industry.”

Consuming products and solutions with this ability to absorb disruption and become stronger and better as a result is going to be key to meeting current demands and, more importantly, continuing to seize upon new ideas and focus on the right areas for innovation. 

“Necessity is the mother of innovation,” says Small. “However, our industry has for too long been driven by the pursuit of perfection.”

Perfection is the Enemy of Innovation

In Small’s opinion, necessity is the mother of invention and innovation. Unfortunately, when necessity is absent, when it isn’t a driving force behind decision making, too many organizations operating within the outsourcing industry are focused instead on perfection, which by its very nature, stops innovation dead in its tracks.

“Perfection is the enemy of innovation,” says Small. 

He believes that chasing perfection ends in businesses developing a tunnel vision where the absolute focus is on improving an individual metric or touchpoint and in doing so not being able to see the bigger picture.

“The CX service industry model is one built upon perfection,” Small explains. “Its infrastructure is all built to deliver perfection and we’re incentivized to deliver to this goal. Unless a solution is tried and tested, it is considered a risk and is often discounted.”

A Digital Dead End

It’s why when one takes a step back so that a macro view of the industry and of how that industry interacts with its client is possible, it’s easy to see why attempts to leverage technology to improve customer experience fail to deliver. 

“We see digital dead ends,” says Small. “The deployment of new channels or new technology without first identifying how they’re going to add value – and how they’re going to scale.” 

In the long term, such myopia could have a greater negative effect on customer experience than even the coronavirus. 

“It’s still true that a single poor experience can have a far-reaching impact on a brand, but focusing on this particular issue, is actively preventing brands and CX outsourcers from genuinely working in partnership in a way that prioritizes innovation and has a long-term positive impact.”

So, what’s the solution? How can organizations overcome the disruption of this pandemic and, crucially, continue meeting the expectations of their customers as their demands continue to change and as technology continues to present new opportunities for closer connections?

To understand the current state of the customer experience outsourcing industry and to understand the steps to take to stay ahead of the curve in order to deliver on customer experience, watch Mike Small’s full keynote presentation.

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