You know how it feels when you get off a really fast ride and plant your feet back on solid ground? You feel like you’re still “moving.” I’ve experienced that same feeling after a Customer Advisory Council meeting. Things go so fast, there’s so much to talk about that when it’s over, you feel like you’re still going 100 miles an hour!
And that’s probably a good thing. These ongoing engagement programs with top customer decision makers help the host team understand the market more clearly. The continuous customer feedback from these programs gives the executive team the ammunition they need to drive strategy, planning, marketing, innovation, acquisitions, sales and service. I emphasize continuous for a good reason. The dialog doesn’t stop when the meeting is over – you can learn even more by keeping the momentum going and engaging your customers between meetings. In her blog, "Is the End the End or Just the Beginning?" my colleague, Misty Strawser, articulates the importance of “getting to work” soon after the meeting and continuing to share the feedback received.
Keep the Momentum Going!
Council meetings are rich in member feedback with discussions that provide the host team with an intimate look into the “world of their customers.” Internally, the executive team has to very quickly “get to work” to evaluate what they heard and identify what they will do next – therein lies the opportunity to engage your customers between meetings.
What’s the best way to do that? First and foremost, regular communications to members to keep them apprised of any updates, progress, company news, etc. are a must. But there are other options too, and in my next blog I’ll talk about Sub-committees and some best practices on how to make them successful.