Gummy Worms and Customer Experience Excellence!

July 15th was National Gummy Worm day and while that might not be the type of information you would expect from this blog, it turns out to have significance in our office.  Specifically, National Gummy Worm day served as an opportunity to “surprise and delight” many of our clients and business partners.  Additionally, it allowed us to reaffirm that client experiences are an enterprise-wide competency.  Allow me to explain…

While I have been vacationing the past two weeks (thus, the absence of blogs and podcasts) my team was busily finishing preparations to send out box loads of gummy worms to celebrate this uniquely quirky day.  In fact, the team effort involved virtually everyone on our staff (Tiffany, Jill, Andrew, Lynn etc) as they updated mailing information, purchased worms, affixed labels, and boxed the worms safely for their respective destinations.

The goal of the gummy worm mailing was NOT to promote our speaking or consulting services.  It wasn’t even designed to cleverly announce a new book project.  It simply was about “surprising and delighting” a group of people we feel grateful to know.  In essence, it was our attempt to create an uplifting moment or two for some of the folks with whom we wish to maintain contact.

Some might argue that we wasted money in the labor, worm costs, and mailing expenses. Other’s might suggest we would have been better served by sending a few personalized gifts or forwarding direct marketing materials to key clients and prospects.

From my perspective, our Gummy Worm project is at the heart of our relationship-focused business.  I am proud of our team.  The idea for a Gummy Worm mailer did not come from me.  I lack that imaginative flair.  Thanks to Andrew and Tiffany’s idea and an entire team effort to support the project, this small act of positive relationship outreach occurred.  I will continue to support such ideas as we go forward.

What can your team be doing to surprise and delight your customers (maybe with less risk for producing tooth decay or elevating sugar levels)?  Moreover, how committed are you to just being in relationship without needing to market or sell?

Oh by the way, July 15th was also National Ice Cream Day.  I can’t wait to see what our team does next year……

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Joseph A. Michelli, Ph.D. is a professional speaker and chief experience officer at The Michelli Experience. A New York Times #1 bestselling author, Dr. Michelli and his team consult with some of the world’s best customer experience companies.

Follow on Twitter: @josephmichelli

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