Last April, the UX leadership at my company, Slalom Consulting, gathered at an off-site meeting to get aligned on how best to brand and market our UX capabilities to our colleagues and clients. Slalom has a strong, seasoned UX team with people distributed across its local offices in the USA, as well as a national team that supports all of us. We excel at holistic, outside-in, omnichannel experience strategy work, which is an exponentially increasing growth area for us and an integral part of our business and technology services. It’s this type of UX strategy work that gets me pumped and makes me want to spring out of bed every morning. But as I discovered, some people at Slalom did not see this work as belonging to the User Experience practice. Read More
Recently, during an early scoping effort for a project with a new client who needed our help transforming their retail experience, we proposed their considering a journey-mapping exercise. Their response:
“Please! I do not want to see another journey map.”
Were we surprised? Meh. It was only a matter of time.
This response—or perhaps lament might be a better word—came from the client executive who is responsible for leading the effort. I was not at that meeting, but was curious about where this comment came from, so I probed for more detail about the context. There wasn’t much more to learn, but it was clear that this person had experienced a few journey-mapping efforts in the past and failed to see their value. And it confirmed what a lot of us have been expecting. Read More
When I talk to companies, customers, and colleagues about UX strategy and the importance of understanding the end-to-end customer experience, I often tell stories about seemingly trivial parts of an experience with a brand that can have huge impacts. Small things can have significant impacts on customer acquisition and loyalty—and companies often overlook or under-prioritize them. For example:
The process of exchanging a pair of shoes to get the right size may be so cumbersome that you don’t even want to bother with it.
A meal that you have at a restaurant leaves a bad taste in your mouth—not because it wasn’t delicious, but because the server was inattentive and rude.
Navigating a company’s interactive voice response (IVR) system to speak to a real person on the phone becomes a test of rage restraint, because it’s so abundantly clear that they want to make it as hard as possible.