In an increasing digital age and with the impact of COVID, organisations have a window of opportunity to review their practices and build a culture and practice which places clients at the centre.

Centrality of Clients

In an environment still coming to terms with the impact of COVID, businesses in both B2B and B2C areas are asking themselves, if they can rely on the loyalty of customers they had prior to January 2020?

Customer’s priorities have been impacted by the uncertainty and fear they have felt and by losses they may have experienced. How B2B and B2C businesses pivot and adapt to changing customer experience will, in large measure, determine their ability to consolidate and grow.

While there is much talk about the importance of the customer or client, often there is a disparity between the talk and the practice of the business. A subtle, unconscious inertia can pull organisations into being company centric rather than customer centric, almost without them realising what is occurring. In an increasing digital age and with the impact of COVID, organisations have a window of opportunity to review their practices and build a culture and practice which places the client at the centre.

Organisations that are company centric, channel the customer through a linear series of interactions that allow the business to control both the process and the interactions.  However, customers rarely follow stepped out journeys. Instead, they follow their impulses, urges, whims, and preferences often in unplanned moments of opportunity.  This means organisations need to understand these unplanned moments and provide opportunities that allow clients to make decisions to achieve their original intent.

The customer-centric, purpose-led approach is even more important for B2B organisations because longer buying cycles means keeping clients engaged in longer journeys that have more interaction points.  This means more people, each on their own journey with their own purposes depending on their role resulting in a multi-layered client journey which is more challenging than an interaction in a B2C environment.

How do we create a stronger customer-centric environment?

The first step is to shift our thinking from a transactional perspective which is simply a buy/sell dynamic to one where both organisation and client are viewed in a symbiotic relationship. A symbiotic relationship is one that is mutually beneficial.  In other words, we change our perspective from seeing the client as a path to achieve a purchase to viewing our relationship with the client as a means to achieve their purpose.

One of the ways businesses do this is by focusing on moments that matter to clients.  Accenture, in research found there are specific client interactions known as “moments that matter” that have an outsized influence on customer happiness and loyalty. There are three moment that are particularly relevant; when a customer pays a bill, upgrades or changes services or calls with a technical question or billing issue. In considering these three moments that matter, organisations can boost customer happiness and achieve brand advocacy & loyalty.

This information provides the second step.  It is easy to fall into the trap of thinking that to “delight our customers”, a phrase used by Jeff Bezos businesses need to provide them with something new and different.  In fact, what delights clients is the opportunity to deal with businesses, with less effort. Life for clients is complicated enough, where businesses can remove friction from the customer experience and provide smooth, efficient, and fast service, they provide delight.

Removing friction from the customer/client experience provides small and midsized B2C and B2B businesses with a window of advantage, for while larger organisations may have greater resources, there is often, as mentioned a cultural inertia to change that allows opportunities for more nimble companies to better align with customers’ purpose and forge new relationships that strengthen loyalty between them and their clients.

Becoming customer-centric takes commitment and a dedication and willingness to look at every aspect of our business.  It takes work to work against the inertia that drives businesses back to being company-centric.  Yet, if we want to stand out to customers and clients, we need to walk the path of finding out and meeting our clients' purpose.

[1] Designing Customer Journeys for the Post-Pandemic World (

[2] Designing Customer Journeys for the Post-Pandemic World (

[3] ibid

[4] Portrait Of The Customer-Centric Legal Function (

[5]  Designing Customer Journeys for the Post-Pandemic World (

[6] Customer Experience Can Be Data Driven—Here’s How (

[7] ibid

[8] ibid

[9] Portrait Of The Customer-Centric Legal Function (

[10] ibid

[11] ibid

[12]  Designing Customer Journeys for the Post-Pandemic World (