Customer: Sales, Service, Marketing

Listening to customers

The customer is always right, or so people have always said. And perhaps this remains true even today. The CEOs of major multinationals believe this and they note how important it is for a company to listen to the needs and views of its customers. Developing a direct relationship with them, including with the support of new technologies, represents a step forward towards success.

Customer: Sales, Service, Marketing

High on the priority list of CEOs on four continents is improving customer relations (Source: Conference Board, Global Survey 2014 carried out on 1020 CEOs on four continents).

The main points expressed by CEOs for intervening in this area are, in order of importance:

  • Deepen understanding of customer needs/expectations;
  • Improve the quality of products/services (and the customer experience);
  • Become personally involved with the most important customers;
  • Increase the speed with which products and services are launched on the market;
  • Link the key needs of customers to marketing, communications and advertising campaigns;
  • Increase the transparency of customer relations processes;
  • Increase the range of products/services to serve increasingly specific segments;
  • Increase the ease-of-use and fruition of products and services;
  • Get a better understanding of customer expectations, including through the use of new technologies;
  • Utilize new communications technologies and social media.

Front-line and training

Another recent international study based on a broad sample of companies highlights the fact that, in Europe, skill development is one of the top three priorities for nearly half of the CEOs interviewed.  And in nearly half of these cases, customer expectations determine which skills to develop. It is no accident, therefore, that in 2014 companies increased investment in improving the “front-line” competencies of their employees, accounting for 40% of their overall budgets (33% for employees in contact with customers and 7% for supervisors). A net growth, given that in 2010 spending on front-line training was only 22%.

Improving competencies is mandatory for companies to boost customer loyalty and thus raise the level of customer experience. But where to begin? These are the cornerstones of a competency development project:

  • identify the key competencies for the business;
  • bring HR and management into line about the skills to be developed;
  • leadership and coaching for the development expressed by managers and supervisors;
  • measure the impact of the program.

The main services of the Customer practice are:

  • Assessment of corporate customer excellence;
  • Voice of customer;
  • Voice of people;
  • Competence models;
  • Competence assessment and gaps;
  • Management alignment (sales management and customer interface functions);
  • Training (specifically: Creating Client Value; Strategic Account Management; Sales Coaching);
  • Coaching;
  • Consulting support for complex sales projects;
  • Consulting and training regarding customer and after-sales service;
  • Integration of methods and tools with CRM and pipeline;
  • Digital skill-building: gamification, coaching on-line, learning tracking.

Strategic alliance with Imparta Ltd

The European House – Ambrosetti has recently signed an exclusive collaboration agreement for Italy with Imparta Ltd—partner in the development of sales and service skills for major companies on a global level—in order to guarantee the highest international standards of training and consulting in customer sales, service and orientation. The European House-Ambrosetti and Imparta share the same customer-centric philosophy, efficient methods of client value creation, ability to identify and develop key business competencies and scrupulous measurement of the impact, including on profitability, of the initiatives undertaken.
It is for this reason that many of our clients have chosen to work with us.

Maurizio Besozzi

Maurizio Besozzi

Tel.  +39 02 46753 262