In last week’s post, I wrote about Building Your Multi-Faceted, Multi-Skilled CX Team. I outlined the various skills that you’ll need on your team. An important thing to note is that not all skills needed to execute on your customer experience strategy will come from the core CX team. And not all of the oversight will come from that team, either.
That’s where governance comes in. I recently wrote an article for GetFeedback that goes into more detail about what governance is and how closely the five cross-functional committees (or you may have more) of the governance structure work together.
The article starts off like this…
Whether you’re just getting started with your customer experience transformation work or well on your way, it’s critical to understand that this work cannot be successful without all hands on deck. The entire organization, not just your executives, must not only be committed to but also involved in the work that lies ahead. How do you ensure that happens?
There are a lot of foundational elements that must be in place for the success of the transformation. One of those elements is a governance structure. This structure is critical to success for a variety of reasons. But first, let me clarify what exactly it is.
BusinessDictionary.com defines governance as “the establishment of policies, and continuous monitoring of their proper implementation, by the members of the governing body of an organization. It includes the mechanisms required to balance the powers of the members (with the associated accountability), and their primary duty of enhancing the prosperity and viability of the organization.”
In the customer experience world, governance has two parts to it.
- Structure: It is all about the governing body but also about establishing policies, monitoring, and enhancing the prosperity of the organization. This part covers both oversight and execution, as well as driving accountability throughout the organization by creating committees and assigning specific tasks and responsibilities to those committees.
- Operating Model: It is also an operating model that drives execution of the CX vision to strategy through data democratization, socializing and operationalizing insights to action, prioritizing improvement initiatives, developing new business processes, defining success metrics, outlining the decision making process, defining the communication plan, and more. [Note: I wrote an article for TechTarget earlier this year on the operating model part of governance.]
For the purpose of this article, I’m going to focus specifically on the first part, the structure. It is comprised of clearly-defined cross-functional roles and responsibilities for decision, action, change, oversight, and accountability. The structure stands in the form of committees, which must be cross-functional in order to avoid siloed efforts and thinking overtaking the CX transformation work. Their role, in a nutshell, is to keep the entire organization focused on improving the customer experience and doing what’s right for customers.
At a high-level, the committees within the structure have a variety of responsibilities that make them critical to transformation success, not the least of which includes commitment and alignment from the top (see Executive Committee. Other general committee responsibilities include:
- Provide oversight into the various customer experience improvement initiatives and provide guidance and prioritization with regard to each
- Define criteria for prioritization, metrics to track progress, and overall success metrics
- Monitor progress of the initiatives toward meeting business objectives and desired outcomes
- Review customer insights and ensure that they are disseminated to the respective departments to act on them
- Provide oversight to ensure cross-functional teams work together and share responsibility for improvements
- Maintain a master list of customer experience initiatives not only for the purpose of monitoring but also to use when prioritizing new initiatives against the current workload
- Review, prioritize, and approve budget for customer experience improvement initiatives
- Ensure grass roots adoption of the work to be done and facilitates that groundswell needed to make this successful organization-wide.
There are various committees that can be included in governance structure, and roles and responsibilities will vary somewhat by committee. The most common committees and roles in the structure include an Executive Committee, a CX Executive Sponsor, an EX Executive Sponsor, a Core CX Team, CX Champions, and a Culture Committee.
To get the details behind each of these teams or committees, please read the rest of the article here.
Good governance cannot remain merely a philosophy. Concrete steps have to be taken for realizing its goals. -Narendra Modi
Annette Franz is an internationally recognized customer experience thought leader, coach, speaker, and author. She recently published her first book, Customer Understanding: Three Ways to Put the “Customer” in Customer Experience (and at the Heart of Your Business); it’s available on Amazon in both paperback and Kindle formats. Sign up for our newsletter for updates, insights, and other great content that you can use to up your CX game.
Image courtesy of Pixabay.