“I remind myself every morning: Nothing I say this day will teach me anything. So if I’m going to learn, I must do it by listening.”

Larry King

All businesses want to improve and stay ahead of the competition. Which ones succeed is directly related to being the best at listening not only to their customers but also to their employees. Whether it is a service, a marketing strategy, or a product, feedback on whether something is meeting the needs and wants of your customers is essential for you to be able to constantly improve the customer experience.

All of your customer-facing employees need to listen and inquire all the time. That should be a given. The trick is to have a way to capture what each of them has heard or discovered and channel that information into a process for continuous improvement throughout your company or organization. Information “in” that never comes “out” is useless.

At Smart Recipe Consulting we have successfully developed an easy to understand and implement strategy to make this kind of listening and reporting back a strength of any organization. We call it “Smart Improvement,” which includes a 5-step process for determining the customer need, measuring the “size of the prize,” setting interim goals, measuring results, and celebrating success.

With the kind of process in place, innovative ideas that delight customers will freely flow and set your company or organization apart from your competitors. In my opinion, this is really the only good reason to be in business in the first place, and it is certainly the only way to insure you will stay in business.