The win-win of happiness, act now!

Erika Stude
Customer Experience Manager, Alko

In Finland, the most progressive companies want to develop and lead their customer experiences, to become the best of the best. In my workplace, Alko, we are also moving towards leading a more holistic customer experience as a continuum of former customer service process development.

How do Finns succeed on a global scale? Do the best wizards of memorable customer experiences live in Finland or elsewhere? For this question, I got a superb answer at the Customer Experience World seminar in London in May.

The common truths and basic elements of customer experience management transcend the boundaries of countries and industries. To me, concepts such as the NPS, personas, customer journey and the strong correlation of employee and customer experience sounded very familiar. However, it is not enough anymore to pursuit customer satisfaction or employee satisfaction. The more challenging indicator that should be measured is the amount of people’s happiness.

Companies strive for happy customers and employees

“It is not enough anymore to pursuit customer satisfaction or employee satisfaction. You should measure people’s happiness.”The sources of happiness vary very much between different generations. Unlike us, experienced veterans of work life, the new gaming generation that is just starting their careers require flexibililty and  meaningful work content that suits their personal values for their happiness. Life balance, the relation of work and leisure-time, must be optimal, and experiences should be up for grabs around every corner. Whether a young person is in the customer or in the employee role, these expectations should be taken seriously today.

It is crucial that the often middle-aged top management team stops and thinks over the way they act in their organization. The way you look at the world often springs from your own generation´s timeline, the one you are most familiar with. The brand new idea of a revolutionizing service concept, customer promise or social media message, should be tested first with your own dear granny as well as children or grandchildren. Next, ask the opinions of your employees of different ages and only finally start testing with customers. The interpretation and feedback differs from generation to generation for sure.

Make your Finance Director your first follower

“Happy employees lead to happy customers, and develop ROI as well. ”So, happy employees lead to happy customers, which has been proved to develop ROI as well. In the seminar, I was offered an interesting tip to make our Finance Director my first follower –check.

However, he might not be able to help with the fact that 40% of the employees are unhappy in their work and 25% are experiencing continuous work-related stress as they work at their highest limit. In the pursuit of happiness, all superiors should learn to profoundly know each member of his or her team, their expectations, aspirations and dreams. The same applies to your client base: one cannot lead customer experience without first learning to understand your customers’ everyday lives, values, expectations, needs, practices and above all, their feelings towards your company brand.

“An international customer experience manager is passionate, bold and acts fast.”A brilliant speaker in the seminar crystallized perfectly and simply what a super customer experience is all about.  Based on her own experience with an American airline, she came up with the thought “They actually seem to like me!”

So, what was my conclusion of how we Finns compare internationally? I find the biggest difference – for our defeat – to be the lack of passion, boldness and speed.

Act fast! Succeed or fail, but do something, right now…

Want to hear more?

Would you like to get fresh ideas on how to make your customers and employees happy? We can make it happen.

The Global #1 Best-Selling Business Book Customer Experience 2 Is a Shiny Example of the ‘New Normal’

Customer Experience 2 tops the charts as the #1 best selling book on Amazon e.g. in the “Customer Service” and “Consumer Behaviour” categories in multiple countries (USA, UK, Canada and France, etc), making the co-authors Best Selling Authors on three continents. Sirte Pihlaja, the CEO of Shirute, is a Finnish CX/EX expert, who has been evangelising CX all over the world during the last 25+ years. Her passion is using creative methodologies in creating great CX and EX. That is why she wrote about customer-centric culture and on the Role of Play in Business.


Does your company need a little shape up in customer experience management? We win over hearts and make your customers happy. We know how to inspire people to buy, engage and recommend! Let’s start running together to become a customer champion!


sales (at )


sales (at)

Order newsletter