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Chief Friction Officer (CFO)

Uncategorized Nov 20, 2019

I was thinking about the book, The Effortless Experience by Dixon, Toman and DeLisi which was published in 2013. I recently discovered it a few months ago and have read it twice. It's that good!

One of the key tenets of the book is to forget about trying to 'WOW' customers and focus on simply meeting their expectations. What a novel concept!

It's not about trying to impress your customers, it's about being able to serve them (i.e., resolve issues quickly when they call in) or better yet, allow them to serve themselves (i.e., solve a problem on their own without calling customer support).

The authors used the term 'effortless' but as an engineer, I like to think in terms of friction. The more you can reduce the 'coefficient of friction' between two surfaces, the faster an object will travel.

The same holds true for a customer and an organization. Being able to reduce the friction between the two will allow for a frictionless experience allowing the relationship to evolve faster.

  • How many sales have been lost because of an extra step the customer had to take?
  • How many sales have lost because the customer got frustrated with your process (e.g., website too difficult to navigate)?

How many times have you been so frustrated with a buying experience that you delayed buying, "I'll buy it later" and never did?

We often attribute status quo bias (no decision) to uncertainty and/or anxiety. We may need to add 'friction' (complicated) to the mix.

Maybe it's time for companies to consider a new position, Chief Friction Officer (CFO) whose sole purpose is to reduce the coefficient of friction anywhere the client makes contact with the company.

It's worth considering.



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