How do you extend the value of a customer advisory board beyond those who participate in the meeting room to the rest of your organization? Here are a few of the most common challenges we see, and some recommendations to tackle them.
Camille is an enthusiastic long-distance runner who enjoys spending time with her family and traveling to New York.
Camille has a BA in broadcast journalism from Hofstra University and is a certified legal video specialist.
Prior to COVID, I would have told you collaboration is sitting around a conference room table and utilizing a whiteboard to brainstorm — whether for upcoming customer advisory board meeting topics, volunteering opportunities or what the next client team call should entail. However, if you take that whiteboarding exercise and conference room out of the equation, what are you left with? Your team.
Growing up, I would often hear the saying that “honesty is the best policy.” It’s always best to be upfront, otherwise you’re only masking underlying issues and more often than not, that lid won’t remain closed. As an adult, I can attest that I remind my six-year-old of this…. on a near-daily basis.
have an even greater understanding of the value that our clients and their customers who participate in customer advisory boards gain from attending shorter, but more frequent virtual sessions.
I once considered January to be a sort of “regroup” month. I had some extra time to dig out from emails that I received during the holidays, look ahead to what was on the horizon for the coming weeks and plan accordingly. That was then and those were different, pre-pandemic times.
As we at Farland Group gear up for the end of 2020, and prepare for customer advisory board meetings for 2021, I’ve been thinking a lot about how I would best describe this year in one word — adaptability.
Before COVID, we would often hear from business leaders about the challenges they faced surrounding talent and resources. Executives were seeking peer advice on how to invest in current employees to keep skills fresh and up to date. They wondered if new entrants in the market had the more creative, innovative skills needed. And, they wanted to understand the best way to reskill employees — through in-house training, external partners or a combination of both.
Country music has never been my thing. New age / pop country, maybe sort of, but music by the likes of Dolly Parton did not appeal to me. Simply put, it wasn’t relatable. However, that quickly changed when our Farland Group President, Jane Hiscock, mentioned a podcast about Dolly Parton (full disclosure she wasn’t a big Dolly fan before the Podcast either).
We have all been affected by the COVID-19 health crisis. It has upended everyday life in ways that were previously unimaginable, and each of us has our own complex situation. What I’ve learned over the last month may have zero to do with customer advisory boards, but it’s still important as we all try to continue moving forward.
In recent weeks and the health crisis that is COVID-19, the power of virtual meetings has never been so clear. Farland Group already uses virtual sessions to engage customer advisory board clients in-between the in-person meetings, and given the current environment, most (if not all) of our upcoming customer advisory board sessions are continuing on — in a virtual setting.
As you look to what your priorities are for the future — whether for the rest of this year or next, or five years on the horizon, have you wondered whether you’re making the right decisions? Is your strategy for X, Y, Z sound, and if not, how should you tweak it? How can one gather outside perspectives, advice and feedback that are unbiased? Maybe, starting a customer advisory board is the right answer.