Just 20 months after being appointed CEO of the struggling HP, Meg Whitman is already starting to see glimpses of how her leadership is impacting the computer giant. What is her secret? Customer Engagement.
Despite last quarter’s earnings being down on the same period last year they beat estimates by 6 points. From kicking up a storm at E-bay which she took from an online flea market with 170 employees to a lean mean commercial machine with 2,500 employees selling in over 27 different countries, bringing immediate results to her tenure at HP and now being listed Forbes’ 15th Most Powerful Woman. So what is the key to Meg Whitman’s success?
She listens to her customers.
Many companies make the mistake of being inwardly focused. They look at their own financials, strategy and performance. Important, yes but these indicators will only bring you results if your success is 100% dependent on your own business. Businesses need customers and those businesses that find their way through the myriad of consumer needs and the complex quagmire of commercial challenges are the ones that remember to look outwardly.
Valuable information is often lost in the gap between sales, marketing and customer service teams. By galvanising these teams and bridging this gap you can open doors to increased profitability and optimised efficiency. effectively analysing your calls to see what your customers are seeing and saying can make a huge difference to your business, bringing you instant benefits you have only ever dreamed of.
3 ways to improve customer engagement
- Listen to what your customers are actually I’m not talking feedback forms left on the front desk. Think broader. Listen to what your customers are saying to your sales team. Are the buying signals there? Are they being picked up? Are your teams using the right hooks?
- How are they saying it? Are you monitoring your MRoI? By watching how your customers respond to your marketing you can save time and optimise your MRoI.
- Involve your team. Your customer front line is the most important resource you have in understanding your customers. Seek their input. At worst you will increase motivation and self-worth and at best you will get outstanding insights and information on how to replicate successes.
By understanding her customers Meg Whitman has propelled herself to success and increased her business’ responsiveness to the economic environment, increased the value of their proposition and driven business growth that sets her apart from her competitors. Now all that remains to be seen is whether Meg can work her magic with the customers of HP.