I recently attended the Atlantic Broker convention in Halifax. A theme that is all too common came up: focus on the customer. Phrases like 'customer centricity', 'customer oriented', 'customer experience' and 'customer preference strategy' were spoken. Rightfully so. The heart of any business, really, is satisfied customers.
The industry's leading brokers raise this banner frequently on social media. The need to be 'customer centric' litters the landscape. And of course the need to provide an exceptional user experience with multi-service touch-points is key.
What I don't see or hear is a focus on the broker experience. Never. The brokers who do the bulk of the post-sales work to help retain customers - CSR's, marketers and account managers - appear to be the forgotten ones.
Let's change that.
What is the Broker Experience?
So what exactly are we talking about when we say 'Broker Experience', or BX? I couldn't find an exact definition on google, so I tried crafting one:
It's the experience, or sum of all experiences, that any one of your brokers has while working at your brokerage. It includes the role and responsibilities, the physical space, the tools, the processes, the relationships with other staff and with customers.
In essence, it is the entire environment that shapes, molds and impacts a broker's experience, and thus engagement, with your company.
Why focus on Broker Experience?
Former Campbell's Soup CEO Doug Conant said it best, "To win in the marketplace you must first win in the workplace."1 That's why talking about the Broker Experience is to critical. The path to a great customer experience begins with a great broker, or employee, experience. It goes something like this:
- The more engaged a person is at work, the more productive they are;
- The more productive they are, the better service they provide;
- The better service they provide, the more customers stay and new sales that are made;
- The more customers retained and new sales made, the higher your brokerage's revenue.1
In the end, your staff will likely provide a better customer experience without you having to focus on customer experience.
Start asking some questions
Let's say you agree - focusing on the Broker Experience is a good idea. Where do you start? Try asking some questions, like:
- What are the things at work that keep you from really killing it?
- What are the mindless things you do that you'd rather not do?
- How much time do you spend doing these mindless things?
- How can we improve your day-to-day work environment?
Be warned, though: ask a simple question and you're likely to get a complex answer. That's okay. Start small. Let your staff help guide what can be done to improve their day-to-day experience within your brokerage. In the end, a better customer experience is waiting.