I’d like to start by thanking our host Satmetrix and in particular Bill Karpowicz and his team for the invitation to participate at the EMEA Net Promoter Conference. It is something I do more often these days and enjoy. It brings me in close quarters with fellow Customer experience (CX) professionals, who have to implement CX stuff. And that’s not all. This stuff is hard to do and can take a couple of years to embed.

Things that are simple can be hard to implement. The Net Promoter Score is a perfect example. Too many people mistake NPS for just a number or another customer metric that can be tacked onto a survey and totally miss the point. The smarter early adopters saw the commercial value of a using NPS as part of their operating model. A score is not a system!

Two of my favorite Net Promoter success stories are Virgin Media and Life Financial Group (Probusinessbank) for all the right reasons. I’ll start closer to home.

I remember attending the Net Promoter conference back in 2008 when the Virgin Media NPS programme led by the maestro Sean Risebrow, was in its infancy. Just one year later Neil Berkett the CEO was on stage sharing their early success stories. That itself was something many in the audience envied. Have the boss talking publically about CX transformation and using NPS as part of a daily operating system. However the moment of truth I recall was during the Q&A session when someone in the audience asked Neil the classic question “what would you do differently if you were starting again?”

Neil paused and replied, “I’d become the CEO faster”. And there lies one of the key success factors for any CX transformation initiative.  You need senior leadership.

Here we are back at the Net Promoter Conference and Virgin Media is back on stage. Wow how time flies when good things happen. Smart companies recognise that highly engaged employees create higher customer engagement and ultimately more fans. I loved how Virgin Media used actors to role play what happens in a customer home to emphasize the softer skills, technicians need to succeed through customers eyes. And using role play to help managers develop their behaviors.








Virgin Media is fundamentally a subscription business, who just happen to sell Telco services. So retention matters and so does knowing what may cause them to defect. Virgin Media are able to measure how customers feel about their experience and share this internally in ways employees want to take action.

Virgin Media can link a failure to get CX right. For example if an installation technician encounters challenges and is not able to complete the job first time, NPS is likely to drop by 26 points. Virgin Media can also place a commercial value of the likely impact of loosing the customer.

So what are some key take-aways for companies who also want to be CX centric?

–       Define your intentional customer experience

–       Engage all your people in how to deliver the experience

–       Measure what customers actually experience at key Touch-points

–       Act on customer feedback and

–       continue to Innovate the things that matter most to your employees and customers


Now you just make this Business As Usual, but I never said it would be easy or quick. Remember its a journey not a project.