Don’t let your CX program flame out—establish a steering committee

Nichole Wright | Aug 14, 2017 Nichole Wright 08/14/17

Learning something new can start you on a rollercoaster of emotion. Once we know the benefits we might get, we often want to jump right in. We fantasize about who we’ll become, and the endless pool of possibilities that wait on the other side of the learning curve. Once we take the first step toward the edge, however, we find plenty of obstacles stand between us and our goal. Our excitement wanes. We feel deflated and tired. We tell ourselves things like “If only I had known what to expect, I could’ve planned ahead.”

We help our clients launch new customer experience programs all the time—and when it comes to teaching an entire organization something new, you can amplify those emotions by a thousand. The team tasked with starting a new program probably feels over-the-moon about all the solutions it can add to the company right after the meeting. But when it comes to doing the actual legwork, getting everyone on the same page often feels more like herding cats. The good news is, taking the right steps early on can keep those cats in line when it comes to launch-time.

Here’s the first step in setting up your organization for a successful customer experience measurement program launch: establish a steering committee.

Distribute the weight

CX programs should never be relegated to one department—success depends on getting buy-in from the entire organization. That’s the difference between a program that flops and a program that flourishes. In order to get the most payback, every person in your company should understand how their role can impact the customer experience.


Defining clear roles and expectations for program ownership sets a solid foundation for launching the rest of your program. Establishing a cross-departmental steering committee ensures everyone in your organization understands how each role fits into the program and helps avoid a “not my job” mentality. And by pulling together a group of internal stakeholders from different areas of your business early on, you’re more likely to:

  • Develop a program strategy capable of impacting the entire company
  • Find innovative ways to sync up your CX improvement efforts
  • Make sure the right people are in the room when opportunities arise

Assign a captain

In addition to developing a solid team to lead your CX efforts, appointing a program expert is absolutely essential for a healthy launch. That way there is a clear point of reference when questions arise or decisions need to be made. When choosing an appropriate program expert, it’s important to consider someone who has the qualities that make a successful leader. Ask yourself if the candidates you have in mind are:

  • Empowered to lead important decision-making processes
  • Knowledgeable about the program’s financial implications
  • Willing and able to lead cross-functional teams

Appointing an expert for your program doesn’t mean they should shoulder all the responsibility alone. Ensuring they have a solid support system throughout the life of the program leads to quicker, broader insights. And when it comes to taking action on those insights, a solid support system across the entire organization will ensure a consistent and lasting effort is made to see it through.

Bottom line
Introducing a CX program to your company can be a transformative, business-changing decision for your brand. But actually launching the program can feel overwhelming. Getting your team on board—and with the right key players in place—is the most important first step in ensuring a successful, long-lasting program. Be sure to appoint a program expert to lead the way—and then give them the support of a cross-departmental team. That’s the key to getting the best bang for your investment—which means better business decisions that lead to loyalty and growth.

Want to know more about launching a successful CX program? Check out our full best practice guide here.

Nichole Wright
Director, Client Insights

Customer Experience Update