CXPA: Looking Back, Looking Forward

By Mr. Greg Melia,CAE posted 09-10-2020 03:28 PM


The end of summer is always a time of reflection for me – typically while enjoying favorite places, often on a sun-filled beach. Like so many things, the end of Summer 2020 is different, but the show must go on. As I prepare to work with the CXPA Board and staff on plans for 2021, I am filled with gratitude and pride for what the CXPA community has accomplished in the past 12 months – and filled with curiosity and excitement about the year ahead. Please read this summary and then add your voice to the conversation to help inform CXPA’s future.


I wrapped up Summer 2019 with visits to the Columbus and Toronto CXPA Networks. These visits affirmed the vibrancy and spirit of local peer-to-peer communities and reinforced the importance of bridges between CXPA headquarters and networks. Since these visits, I’ve placed a priority on showing appreciation for our Networks, supporting their on-the-ground leadership. Special thanks to the folks in Atlanta, Cleveland, Calgary, Boston, Portland, Melbourne, and UK Midlands who have especially welcomed me to participate, collaborate and work together. As COVID-19 forced us all to adapt, we were thrilled to see Networks adopt Zoom to keep connections thriving. Many laughed as we learned about imagination and team-building through improvisation from Adam Rudder’s through a special partnership program available to all networks. Most recently, we have begun the roll-out of community landing pages for each Network on CXPA’s website – a development that will help reinforce local communities while also building global connections. As we look to the next twelve months, we ask: “What more can we do to help support and connect Networks to advance CX together? How can we provide more value to members through CXPA networks?”


Gabe Smith, CCXP joined CXPA in Summer 2019 and to say he has made a positive impact is an understatement. Working with CXPA members and colleagues, Gabe has helped to ensure that we are sharing CX stories and wisdom around the globe. Team accomplishments include CXPA’s Guide to CX Job Descriptions, Insight Exchange Videos Series, CXPA Engine e-newsletter, numerous member profiles, and a nine-fold increase in CXPA blog post views. Networks have been doing amazing things too – from top-notch CX Day 2019 programs organized by Nashville, Toronto, and San Francisco to the thought-provoking “Inspiring Racial Equity in Your Organization” session organized by the Boston and Atlanta CXPA Networks. On the Awards front, CXPA has continued to recognize CX innovation and professional impact on the field. As we move forward, we will be introducing new programs to meet some of our most pressing goals as an organization. As we look to the next twelve months, we ask: “What ideas do you have to enhance CXPA content and awards to better support you and advance CX together? What content can we provide that will be of added value to you?”


One thing that personifies Certified Customer Experience Professionals is a commitment to continual improvement. The CCXP program has lived that commitment these past twelve months! Fueled by exceptional support from CXPA’s Recognized Training Providers and the Making the Most of Your CCXP Committee, we broke the 1,000 current CCXP mark earlier this year. We’re seeing the real-world impact as companies like Amazon post jobs as “CCXP preferred”. An international panel of experts convened to review the current CX framework that serves as the basis for the CCXP exam, and more than 375 individuals have completed a survey to ensure a consensus perspective on this important work. Along the way, we added the ability for candidates to take the CCXP exam from their home or office via secure remote proctoring. As we look to the next twelve months, we ask, “How can we further strengthen the global perception and practice of CX through the CCXP certification? What else can we do to help encourage professional CX skills development?”

Strategic Priorities

Last September, the CXPA Board and staff collaborated to develop a framework to guide CXPA forward. Building on the CXPA Mission Statement and Core Values. We adopted four statements to guide our work:

CXPA engages the entire CX community by connecting practitioners and providers for mutual benefit through practitioner-focused initiatives, local and global events, career resources, and valued online tools.
CXPA takes an active, independent role in defining and championing the CX discipline through professional credentialing, CX Day, content creation, awards programs, thought leadership, and curation of third-party content.
CXPA collaborates to serve CX community on needs that CXPA cannot accomplish alone by partnering with non-profit, for-profit, and governmental entities to advance the practice of CX, CX content resources, and CX community.
CXPA strives for operational excellence by ensuring that staff and volunteers are well equipped, informed and supported to execute CXPA’s strategy.

The statements are supported by a list of identified priorities, on which we have made progress. In addition to what is outlined above, we have formed collaborations with Awards International and Terragni Consulting, and completed consensus work to promote CX which can be viewed at On the governance front, we appointed three members to the 2021 Board from outside the US, shortened Board terms by two years, held Member Town Halls that gathered feedback from several dozen members, and stated our commitment to bring CXPA’s core value diversity and inclusion commitments to life. As we look to the next twelve months, we ask “How should we evolve CXPA’s strategy, leadership, and community to be prepared for the next ten years of advancing CX?”

Embarking on A New Season

As we enter Autumn in the US, harvest themes are emerging. I see CXPA benefitting from the yield from the seeds planted by our Founding members, long-time supporters, and labors of the past. At the same time, I see preparation needed for present and looming challenges –holding a spotlight on Customer Experience amidst a proliferation of “X” management philosophies that draw attention away from a focus rooted in a commitment to customer understanding; advocacy for recognition of Customer Experience and qualified CX professionals as a discipline that drives better outcomes; and continued consensus-driven work focused on complete, well-rounded CX practices. As we look forward, I ask: “What do you see as the challenges we must be prepared to overcome to advance CX together?”

I hope you agree these are meaningful and worthwhile questions and will add your voice to help inform the virtual planning session that will happen later this month.  Here are two ways to participate to give you the option of private or public response:

Together in advancing CX,


P.S.  We heard in the Town Halls that members would like CXPA to make it easier for you to keep up with developments at CXPA.  To help, we’ve added a “What’s New” page on the website.