Move From Reactive To Proactive

Do you and your team find yourselves in “crisis mode,” tending to customers that defect, seemingly out of nowhere?  Is your organization surprised when a customer expresses interest in growing with you?  Do account managers spend more time putting out fires than growing accounts? If so, your internal culture may be reactive.

Reactive organizations are characterized by their inability to foresee both successes and failures – with failures sending the entire organization into upheaval.  Focus in these organizations revolves around customer service and addressing problems that arise.  There may be emphasis on how quickly problems are addressed or how much effort was put into addressing them, rather than forecasting issues and proactively finding solutions.

One of our clients was ingrained in this type of thinking.  Their entire team revolved around “fixing” problems as they came up.  They lost time and dollars putting out fires every week.  As a software company, they collected vast amounts of transactional data on their customers but had no relational data.  We partnered with them to understand their relationships with their customers, and as part of that, identify key problem experience trends. 

Their teams took the results and focused on fixing the product-focused sources of the problems. They also led an initiative empowering customer service to resolve smaller issues on their own before escalating.  It was a huge time-saver for everyone involved and allowed the team to focus on building relationships rather than “fixing” them.

To make these changes, this client needed to move beyond collecting and managing disparate data to gleaning real insights from meaningful data.  Collecting the right data and dedicating resource to analyze it can move organizations beyond simple trend analysis.

For example, algorithms can be built to determine customers who are “at risk” – or likely to defect – using data from previous quit customers.  This approach enlightens organizations before the problems even crop up with customer service or can help shine a spotlight on those that might defect without calling in their problems.  Armed with this information, inside sales teams can address customers proactively to mitigate the loss of that customer and win back the business.

This type of predictive modeling can also be applied to new initiatives.  Consider pricing changes.  Some customers will inevitably defect if prices increase.  Wouldn’t it be helpful to know how many customers?  And which ones?  Are they key accounts or smaller accounts?  Using data to inform your strategy is helpful in numerous ways and allows you to educate customers on your value, tailor your marketing strategy, and/or understand how changes are likely to impact your business.

These examples show that changing your culture to be more proactive reduces the amount of time and resource spent putting out “fires” and more time spent on growing your business.  Moving beyond reacting to problems and adopting a proactive culture requires utilizing your customer data.  While analyzing data can be complex, it results in powerful rewards that your organization will be reaping in the long-term.

Does your organization need help understanding how your data can make you more proactive?  Fill out our contact form today and a member of our Client Services team will be happy to speak with you.

Posted in Deep Analytics, Insights, LRC Blog.