Five Signs of Customer-Centric Leaders


Great leadership can transform your organization into a customer-centric company and it’s not complicated. But it’s requires consistent leadership attitudes and behaviors that serves both your external customers as well as your internal customers. It’s a win-win!

One of the things I spend my time on is growing our leadership potential. I continuously raise the bar on the customer experience for our guests. We want to deliver the best experience in our brand and create raving fans every time someone walks into our hotel.

Plenty of people can manage. But only a few can really lead. Leadership that gets results takes engaging vision, passion, and the ability to create growth for your business through excellent customer service.

Those elements are executed through the people you lead. Their success is your success as a leader.

If you want your business to succeed and thrive in the market place, you need to be a customer-centric leader. Positive customer experience is critical. I see more and more customers having a say at where they choose to spend their money. The customer has a lot more options today than they did 20 years ago. But again, it takes a leader to create a consistent customer experience day in and day out.

So what does it take to be that customer-centric leader? I have captured my thoughts from working with leaders and my own personal leadership journey in the hospitality field.

They lead by example

First and foremost, lead by example. Customer service is not only what we talk about, but what we DO! You can talk all day long, but until you demonstrate to your team, what excellent customer service looks like and feels like, you will not be a great leader. People follow leaders who walk the talk. They SEE what they do through their actions.

Empower their teams

Employee empowerment is huge, and each team member is trusted to work on outstanding customer interactions that are personalized for each guest. When employees feel empowered, they know they have the leader’s trust in being the ambassador of the company. They will be far more motivated to own the customer experience at every single touch point.

Manage by walking around

The best leaders don’t manage from their office. They walk around and get a true sense of what’s going on in their business. They understand the importance of immediate feedback from internal customers as well as external customers. They listen to the real issues and the challenges people face to become more aware of the little details that can hinder their customer experience.

They have a drive for continuous improvement

The best customer-centric leader must drive continuous improvement by always listening to the customers and looking for opportunities to improve the customer experience. They challenge their teams to grow and develop to deal with new scenarios and exceed the customer expectations. Customer service today is also growing and changing. What worked yesterday may not work today, and we need to be flexible throughout the journey to success.

They add value

At the end of the day, the best customer-centric leaders add value to people every day. Customer service is a people’s business and always will be. Which means you have to grow and cultivate relationships and trust with people. People do business with people they like and trust. When you add value to the customer experience, people love your company.

Same holds true to your internal customers. The best leaders add value through coaching, inspiring and developing the talent they have to deliver excellent customer service experience.

What other signs you know about customer-centric leaders? I would love to hear your feedback.

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