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Unlocking Hospitality: EX = CX 

Becoming a commodity is a business death sentence in today’s evolving economy.  It not only relegates you to competing on price alone but erodes your innovative reputation with customers.

Today’s marketplace demands that experience is a part of the organizational calculus for just that reason – to harness the power of CX to differentiate you from all the noise competing for consumer attention.

What matters most right now in the market?

  1. Personalized experiences that make customers feel welcome and included

  2. Attentive hospitality that is prompt and effortless, and

  3. Delivers on the basics of hospitality with smiles, kindness, and enthusiasm.

It would be easy to jump to the finish line and push the team to deliver on these customer-centric commitments. Now get out there and smile! Go above and beyond! Move faster and be nicer!

Demanding your team adopt certain behaviors always works, right?  I hope you are chuckling as loudly as I am right now. But what if I told you there was a strategy that could activate these behaviors. It’s called Employee Experience (EX)!

EMPLOYEE EXPERIENCE:   The overall perception and journey of the team, including interactions with people, policies, and places.

When you can drive a superior Employee Experience, intentionally considering communication, recognition, engagement, and development, you can inspire your teams to want to deliver exemplary experiences not because they have been ordered to do so, but because they want to.

Why?  Because motivated, inspired, well-cared-for employees deliver superior outcomes for their customers and are more likely to embrace customer centricity.  It isn’t enough to think about the customer-facing elements of your organization, you have to think about your team, who are the face of those elements.

So, what exactly constitutes a positive Employee Experience?

It encompasses everything from the onboarding process to day-to-day operations, employee benefits, career development opportunities, and organizational culture. When employees feel valued, supported, and empowered, they are more likely to do just a little extra to take care of customers.

But it's not just about creating a pleasant work environment, it's about aligning organizational goals with the needs and aspirations of employees. 

When employees understand how their role contributes to the company's success and feel a sense of purpose, they are more engaged and motivated to deliver exceptional service.

Investing in the Employee Experience pays dividends in terms of retention and recruitment. In today's competitive job market, top talent seeks employers of choice who prioritize their well-being and professional growth. By fostering positive EX, organizations not only retain their best employees but also attract new top tier talent as well.

Let’s start by digging into how Employee Experience impacts Customer Experience:

1. Employee Engagement: Engaged employees are more connected to their work and the company's mission. They take pride in what they do, which translates into higher productivity and better service delivery. When employees are engaged, they are more likely to use their discretionary effort to care for customers and take more time to solve problems.

2. Productivity and Efficiency: A positive Employee Experience fosters a culture of collaboration, innovation, and continuous improvement. When employees feel supported and valued, they are more inclined to share ideas, experiment with new approaches, and streamline processes. 

3. Empathy and Connection: Engaged teams are better equipped to understand and anticipate customer needs. When employees feel valued, they are more are more likely to create meaningful connections with customers by seeking to understand them.

4. Brand Advocacy: Employees who are passionate about their work and proud of their organization are natural brand advocates. They become ambassadors for your business and not only speak positively about you to others, they will recommend you as an employer of choice.

As you can see, there is virtue in taking the time to focus inward on your team to influence the external results with your customers.

Let’s talk about where you can focus right now to create that sense of culture and community that will drive those outcomes:

1. Start Strong:  New team members can become disenchanted quickly and even leave your organization.  Ensure a strong onboarding + orientation process and focus on closing the gap between offer and first day on the job.

2. Listen to Your Employees: Solicit feedback regularly through surveys, one-on-one meetings, listening tours, town halls and open-door policies. Then take action on what you hear to show you are listening and open to change.

3. Invest in Learning and Development: Provide employees with opportunities for growth and skill development. Offer learning programs, mentorship initiatives, and career advancement pathways to help them grow and advance.

4. Foster a Positive Work Community: Cultivate a supportive, welcoming, and open work environment where teams feel respected, trusted, and empowered. Recognize and celebrate achievements, promote work-life integration, and encourage collaboration across teams.

5. Set the Tone: Lead by example and embody the values and behaviors you want to see in your team. Demonstrate empathy, integrity, hospitality, and authenticity in your interactions, and prioritize the well-being of your team members. 

It is a tough market out there and customers are savvier than ever when it comes to their expectations around experience and hospitality.  They know what best-in-class experience and hospitality looks like and social media has amplified the voices of those who extol the virtues of high-performing service organizations.  

In many cases, you are competing against reputation rather than reality, which raises the stakes for your service and execution.

By prioritizing the Employee Experience, you create a circle of excellence where your care, communication, and recognition of your team continuously reinforces a people-first culture.  

Or put another way, keeping your team at the center of everything you do ensures your customers will be kept top of mind and center stage.


Meet Tony Johnson

Tony is the Chief Experience Officer (CXO) for 4xi Global Consulting and leader of the Evolving Experience practice. Tony is an internationally recognized thought leader and influencer in Customer and Employee Experience.

He hosts the wildly successful Customer Service Academy podcast and is the author of two books on leadership and CX.

Tony has worked with some of the top organizations across the globe, including 3M, Baylor Scott and White Health, University of Virginia, Siemens, SHRM, and more.

Tony is available to help your organization with:

  • Executive and leadership coaching

  • CX and EX strategy creation

  • Inspirational keynote talks

  • Fractional Chief Experience Officer

  • Fractional Chief Training + Development Officer

Evolving Experiences, a 4xi brand, focuses on Customer Experience (CX) and Employee Experience (EX) as growth engines. By creating fierce loyalty with both employees and customers, organization can differentiate themselves in an ever-changing and competitive marketplace.

Let’s talk about your employee experience, guest experience, fan experience, student experience, patient experience, or traveler experience to craft compelling moments that build lifelong loyalty.


4xi: Inspiring a brighter future, together.

4xi Global Consulting & Solutions is a team of talented leaders from both the client-side and service provider side, creating an impact on the Human Experience (HX) for people at work, in education, rest, and at leisure.

We believe in a people-first, experience-led philosophy; whether client, employee, or guest – their experience is the fundamental foundation of success.

We work with corporations, service providers, and innovators:

  • Strategic Advisory & Special Projects (SPx)

  • Headquarters Fractional Support On-Demand

  • Evolving Experiences© - Employee (EX) & Customer Experience (CX)

  • Design4Life©: Environmental, Physical, and Experiential Design

  • Global Amenities Strategy, Design & Operations

  • TRUE NORTH©: Strategic Partnership & Growth

  • Explorers Innovation Directory: Gateway to Innovation

  • Sustainability Simplified©: Supply Chain & Innovation

  • Market Research Reports & Benchmarking


4xi is proud to be Chair of WORKTECH Academy for North America and a member of its Leadership Advisory Board. 4xi is a Global Ambassador for WORKTECH Academy.

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