|Image courtesy of patriziasoliani|
In your VOC efforts, communication has five broad objectives. Different objectives may apply to different audiences.
- Instruction: Share information or teach stakeholders about the initiative, its purpose, the feedback, the insights, the service recovery workflow, process changes, etc.
- Motivation: Inspire or motivate your audience to do something or to act in a certain way, whether that's inspiring your employees to create a customer-driven environment or motivating your customers to stick with you, try your next product, etc.
- Adoption: Convince your audience or get buy-in, e.g., executive or frontline buy-in. Align the audience with the mission.
- Discussion: Drive open and candid discussions with your employees, customers, and other stakeholders; close the loop. Encourage employees to share their ideas and concerns.
- Expectation: Most importantly, set expectations. Recall that Performance - Expectations = Satisfaction. This applies both to employees and to customers.
How do we ensure that communication around the VOC initiative is delivered in a timely manner and that nothing falls through the cracks? Well, you know the old saying:
Fail to plan... plan to fail!
The solution: a Communication Plan. I've used these with clients over the years, and they are a great way to outline the various communication needs for your VOC initiative. The graphic below shows just one example of a layout for your plan, but you can modify it to meet your needs.
- Identify the various types of communications required for the initiative
- Outline the who, what, when, why, and how
- Identify stakeholders
- Drive accountability
- Secure buy-in from people and for systems needed for success
- Demonstrate that this is a very real initiative
- Provide a roadmap
- Set priorities
- Avoid pitfalls
You can have brilliant ideas, but if you can't get them across, your ideas won't get you anywhere. -Lee Iacocca