We have entered a newer, richer, and exciting era for CX management. We are witnessing firsthand how disruptive organizations are leveraging technology to transform their business and align to the millennial customer. Today, the capacities of bots, seamless omnichannel platforms, and the predictive analytical models contribute to build a faster, more efficient and economically performance response to the cognitive aspect of customer service, tech support, and sales.
AI, ML, and RPA are no longer just buzz words but technologies that are increasingly blurring the lines between humans and machines, creating an era where machines are becoming sophisticated enough to match the human IQ.
But what about the need and the ability to match the human EQ?
Emotional intelligence (measured by EQ) is the ability to perceive, control, evaluate, and express emotions to facilitate social communication and to relate to others. Daniel Goleman, in his book Emotional Intelligence (1996), suggested that EQ might actually be more important than IQ.
It is academically made of 5 key factors:
1. Self-awareness: know yourself, be confident, remain humble
2. Self-regulation: be flexible
3. Empathy: listen, be compassionate
4. Motivation: be positive, take initiative
5. Social skills: take actionable actions
The highest correlation between IQ and EQ creates extraordinary human beings, while a high IQ with zero EQ creates a sociopath.
This unique capacity to be aware, understand, control, express, and impact your own and others’ emotions remains the singularity of the human being.
What does your customer want?
Customers are human beings with rational and emotional needs. While AI and RPA will assist in solving the rational part of their request, the emotional part—that is, the “trust repair” to ensure loyalty to a brand—continues to be the sole domain of human empathy, and that cannot be replaced by machines.
Human interactions are not just cognitive, but social and emotional. This is the reason why, as much as it is important to use AI to assist and support our customer experience experts, it is crucial to use the time saved to leverage the empathetic added value of the human touch to:
- comfort (and even rebuild) the relationship between the customer and the product, service or brand, and
- develop the relationship (sales)
This is not surprising when we keep in mind that the choice of a product, service, or brand is not only rational, but also largely emotional.
While companies gear up and invest heavily in #HighTech (IQ), very few realize and address the need to invest in #HighTouch (EQ) – the need to shift away from the CX agent and towards the agent of the future, the Personal Customer Service Specialist.
The agents of the future
Personal Service Specialists will be empowered, thanks to 5G and AI that will enable them to be in a position to better serve and delight the customers. These are individuals who are:
- carefully selected for their emotional quotient, communication skills, and familiarity with digital assistants/bots
- trained on omnichannel solutions like digital, voice, video, and empathy techniques
- are adept at using all technologies, including virtual reality, push technologies, and know how to dialog with the IOT clusters to ensure a super high level of first contact resolution
- highly coached in conflict resolutions and have a positive attitude to be a comforter
- working in a cool, fully data-enabled, digital environment that facilitate their immersion in the company ecosystem that they represent
The Personal Service Specialists are the ultimate brand ambassadors and customer advocates, providing immediate accurate information and solutions while leveraging the AI, and focus on delighting the customers to reinforce their loyalty to the brand.
AI is transactional, communication is not
Growing customer expectations and digital transformation constitute an extremely fluid environment, in which both: a savvy, people-oriented strategy and a tech-smart support—are the base of our present and the near future.