Six Challenges Every Chief Customer Officer Must Overcome

Chief customer officers (CCOs) are getting more corporate cred these days. But stepping into this rising role comes with challenges. Indeed, the CCO Council has identified six of the greatest challenges these C-suite executives face.

Curtis Bingham, executive director of the CCO Council, offers more than just insight into the challenges. He also offers recommendations for overcoming them.

Are you ready to dive in? LetEUs look at each challenge and its solution.

Challenge 1: Defending Value

BinghamEUs experience tells him that customer-centricity is not widely viewed as a strategic imperative and the CCOs' contribution to this imperative is far from well-defined. As a result, he continued, CCOs spend more time explaining and defending their values than they spend with customers. Kind of ironic, isnEUt it? You may be facing this challenge right now. HereEUs what he recommends:

EUThe CEO and board must recognize the growing body of proof that customer-centricity is the new basis for competitive advantage with demonstrable business results, and then make the CCO a part of this strategic imperative,EU Bingham said.

Challenge 2: Leveraging Authority

According to Bingham, the most successful CCOs recognize and leverage three sources of EUCCO Authority,EU starting with either EUPositional AuthorityEU or EUBorrowed AuthorityEU and quickly earning authority of their own. Without such authority, he said, cultural resistance to change, conflicting priorities, and a number of other obstacles prevent CCO success. HereEUs what he advises:

EUThe CEO must provide to the CCO significant Borrowed Authority,EU he said. EUThe CCO must EUearnEU authority rapidly by providing value, demonstrating results at all levels, and effectively communicating the business impact of those results.EU

Challenge 3: Gaining Resources

It comes to no surprise to Bingham -- and itEUs probably no surprise to you either -- that limited understanding of the types of resources required to transform an organization to customer centricity is the norm.


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