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SA's first B2B client experience handbook

CX heavy-weights Nathalie Schooling and Brendon Bairstow-Klopper launch "Eat Your Own Lunch"
SA's first B2B client experience handbook

The team at nlightencx is recognised as South Africa’s leading multidisciplinary CX specialists who translate insights and data into actionable strategies that can work to mitigate risk, capitalise on cross and up-sell opportunities, ensure client loyalty, and drive overall business growth.

The multiple award-winning company empowers businesses to deliver an enhanced client experience (CX), based on a robust “no-nonsense” approach that cuts to the core to reveal deep insights into client behaviour and perception. Their clients are drawn from a range of industries, including the healthcare, retail, commercial property, logistics, fintech, insurance, retail banking, private wealth and investment, IT, call centre and outsourced-services sectors.

Now CEO Nathalie Schooling and director Brendon Bairstow-Klopper have drawn on their expertise in CX strategy development, training, customer journey mapping and experience redesign, plus two decades of research (1000s of targeted, in-depth telephonic interviews) to create the ultimate how-to CX handbook, called Eat Your Own Lunch.

The handbook is essential reading for any business seeking to bridge the gap between doing business and authentic, deeply valuable human engagement that meets the expectation premium of investors: that current and future customers will rave about every single aspect of their experiences in dealing with the firm.

Brendon Bairstow-Klopper
Brendon Bairstow-Klopper
Nathalie Schooling
Nathalie Schooling

Eat Your Own Lunch is aimed at business executives and managers wanting to know how to practically apply CX within their business, as well as those who already have a CX Journey focus. It is intentionally accessible, with the methodologies outlined in an easy-to-read style, intended for use by everyone working in an organisation, not only those in client-facing roles.

Schooling explains that if delivering a great, consistent experience is important, then efforts have to be driven right through the organisation and should not rest in one silo. It requires cross-functional understanding, commitment, and input from all departments from business development to operations, governance, compliance, finance etc. “It’s not a band-aid, or a marketing project. Great CX has to become part and parcel of the very fabric/DNA of your business.”

Schooling and Bairstow-Klopper are excited to share their specific recipe for CX success in the business-to-business sector, but add that there are many lessons in the book that would apply equally to B2C and B2B2C organisations: “Often when people think about innovation they think technology, or big-ticket improvements that take time and resources to implement. Without negating the role that tech and digital plays as an enabler of CX, we emphasise those small incremental changes that can be implemented fairly quickly, and which will collectively have a big impact on the overall experience.”

Chapters in Eat Your Own Lunch cover:

  • Why Invest in CX?

  • CX Myths and Maturity

  • Leadership is Everything

  • The 8 Key CX Principles

  • CX Formula (which covers, among other things, Customer Journey Mapping)

  • Governance

  • Changing CX Culture

  • How to Keep your CXX Strategy Alive

“Writing this book is something we have wanted to do for a long time,” says Schooling. “We run two CX masterclasses every year over two days, and we wanted to present participants with a great take-away tool to help them apply what they’d learnt. The Covid-19 lockdowns gave us a bit of time to reflect and plot what it should cover, and we realised there was a real need for a book.”

Why ‘Eat Your Own Lunch’? From a business perspective, it's surprising how difficult it is to see the organisation from the outside-in, as a client would. Simple or obvious things that go unnoticed can have a huge impact on overall client experience. “In our world, ‘eating your own lunch’ means proactively taking steps to understand exactly what it is like to do business with yourself,” says Bairstow-Klopper.

It also touches on the difference between client service and client experience: if you prepare a lunch, even if you serve it beautifully, you’re not going to know what it tastes like unless you eat it yourself.

“It's so easy to get trapped in the busy-ness of doing our work, we don’t step out, and look at our business from the staff/client/customer/guest/passenger/member/patient/stakeholder perspective. Every detail… every touch point. What does it FEEL like? We firmly believe this little book could revolutionise the B2B landscape in South Africa - we’ve seen the benefits over the past two decades. It’s time to share those secrets,” says Schooling.

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