Next Generation Perspectives on CX, Diversity and Inclusion

By Mr. Greg Melia, CAE posted 06-10-2021 03:41 PM

This week two important recognitions are on my mind: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer (LGBTQ) Pride Month and Father’s Day.

Being a father helps me be a better person and leader by giving me access to two wonderful daughters who share with me how they see the world. In addition to providing me inspiration, I am grateful when they help me see new perspectives and gain new knowledge based on how they see and experience the world. My younger daughter, Marguerite, is a wonderfully observant person who has always asked questions that make me think. For as long as I can remember, she has wondered why single toilet bathrooms are labeled for men or women. It’s a good question and is a simple example of how every aspect of a system can unintentionally send messages that can make someone feel included or excluded. Last month, Marguerite again enhanced my perspective when our family enjoyed an outdoor meal at a new-to-us restaurant. She ordered her favorite meal – chicken tenders and fries. Since my request for feedback on the meal went unanswered, I tried to simplify it for her asking, “On a scale of zero to ten, how likely are you to recommend these chicken tenders to a friend?” While my wife and older daughter watched with amusement, Marguerite responded, “Well, it depends on which friend we are talking about. Susie is a vegetarian. Raul doesn’t like things that are breaded because he’s gluten intolerant. And I guess that Alinor would like them, but we don’t usually eat together so I’m not sure.” So, it opened a new insight for me ... not just that NPS is an imprecise instrument, but a reminder that there is a great diversity of customer needs – and if we want to be truly inclusive, we need to be aware and provide both options and information.

My older daughter Frannie helps me learn and grow too. She’s been raised in diverse, welcoming communities, and has a wonderful awareness of the diversity of gender identities. She is quick to help remind me and my wife of the correct pronouns to use beyond “he” and “she” which we were taught in school. It’s not an easy thing to be corrected (frequently) but it’s extremely helpful – there are years of practiced speech patterns to overcome. (If you are interested, Frannie approves of this article on how to get people’s pronouns correct.) I am thankful that for the blessing of being a father, and also thankful that cultural, social, legal barriers that prevent LGBTQ individuals from being parents continue to be removed. CX and equality share a common commitment to improved interactions across all touchpoints, people, and technology over time. This week I celebrate our progress -- and pledge to continue my journey to greater understanding, support, and inclusion – and hope that you will too.