Partnering with customers to define and build the future

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced many of us to rethink nearly every aspect of our daily work and personal lives. From canceled events and late deliveries to store closures, overwhelmed services, re-arranged childcare, and even virtual family gatherings, we each face unprecedented challenges. We also face a new set of opportunities.

At the heart of any customer success organization is the ability to listen – to ask for customer feedback and, with an open mind, truly listen to what customers have to say. In some cases, we like what we hear. In other cases, we may not. But if when we listen openly and actively, we uncover opportunities – opportunities to think more, to do more, and to co-innovate in ways we may not have imagined.

This is especially true in the midst of a dramatically changing economy and world. “Particularly in times of crisis,” writes McKinsey, “a customer’s interaction with a company can trigger an immediate and lingering effect on his or her sense of trust and loyalty.” Maintaining that sense begins with a focus on care and connection, actively seeking feedback, and really listening for honest answers and solutions.

At Nuance, we see our customers as vital partners in our evolution and our innovation strategy. Without our customers communicating where they are experiencing business challenges, where our technologies are helping most, or where we could do more, we lack the critical feedback loop that drives us to deliver the most meaningful solutions.

While maintaining that feedback loop has been a constant priority for our team, we knew in the midst of the immense changes triggered by COVID-19 that it was especially critical to reach out to our customers.

In the month of June, we conducted a COVID-19 Pulse Check Survey with a group of customers to better understand how they are progressing and adapting to a new way of working. The main goal of this discovery process was to identify the specific ways that Nuance can best support their teams and their businesses.

The information we received was powerful. It included commentary about how our solutions were providing the flexibility they needed to respond to the pandemic. In other cases there were requests or suggestions for improvements or even new technology that could better enable them to meet new challenges.

What made this feedback unique is that many of our customers, like all of us, are experiencing completely new and different dynamics that are leading to revised processes, ground-breaking innovation, and fresh ideas. So, the feedback uncovered not only great insights, but also invitations to deliver solutions that can not only solve emerging problems, but chart a new path forward to the next-generation of innovative customer engagement solutions. These were invitations, in effect, to define our joint future together.

By listening to our customers and keeping their goals in mind, we constantly work to do better and be better. As we rethink every aspect of our daily work and personal lives, let’s not lose sight of the invitations and opportunities we have to build the future by solving, innovating, and succeeding together.

The co-innovation blog series, written by Joanne Taylor, Senior Vice President of Customer Success and Business Operations, takes a close look at the topics, trends, and innovations that push us all toward long-term success. From exploring the programs and plans that drive growth, to examining the issues that can hold us back from reaching our full potential, nothing is off-limits in this series – after all, the future is ours to build – today.

Joanne Taylor

About Joanne Taylor

Joanne Taylor is Senior Vice President of Customer Success and Business Operations at Nuance. Joanne has more than 20 years of experience designing and directing comprehensive digital transformation and continuous improvement programs to maximize client success and revenue generation for world-class companies. Prior to joining Nuance in 2018, Joanne held senior positions at PwC, IBM, AlixPartners, and ADP where she ran the company’s outsourcing and enterprise payroll services divisions. She holds a bachelor’s degree in marketing from Graceland University and an MBA with a focus on information systems management from Baylor University’s Hankamer School of Business.