Building a customer-centric firm from the top down

Being a customer centric business means that the customer is the focal point of all decisions related to delivering products, services and experiences to create customer satisfaction, loyalty and advocacy.

Building a customer-centric firm from the top down

Customer empathy is key to creating a client centric business. Essentially, customer empathy is the ability to identify a customer’s need, understand the reasons behind that need and respond to it effectively. Every time a decision is made in a customer centric firm, the same question is asked, “how does this benefit the customer?”

True customer centric businesses are the ones that try to understand things from the customers perspective. They offer great service and they build a relationship with their customers. They do not set out to surprise and delight a lucky few customers at the expense of others. Instead, they focus on creating efficient, consistent customer experiences that minimise friction and make the customer want to come back and buy your products or services again in the future.

In order to build a customer-centric business you need to start with your company culture. Culture is best defined as “the way we do things around here.” Having a customer centric culture means that your people value the customer’s needs and their experience of dealing with your firm. A customer centric team will look out for opportunities to make processes easier and more efficient for clients.

Customer centric businesses are always evolving. As your business changes, so will your customers.

As such, it is important to re-evaluate the customer experience at each stage of the buyer’s journey to find new ways to improve the customer experience.

You can measure the success of your customer centric strategy with KPIs such as customer retention rate – the number of customers who are loyal and make repeat purchases. Another good measure of how client centric your firm is, is to measure customer lifetime value. This measures how much revenue a single customer will generate throughout their entire relationship with your business. It’s a good way to account for purchase frequency, purchase value and average lifespan of a customer relationship.

In a customer-centric organisation, everybody understands prioritising the customer and knows the importance of focussing on this and how it is essential for the long-term success of the business. To create that culture within a business, it must come from the top. Creating awareness amongst employees is what makes the culture stick. This also empowers Employees as they are able to uphold this culture even when no one is watching them; making it a part of them and part of what they do instinctively, plus they will pass it on to future employees and it simply becomes part of the organization’s authenticity.

There are a few things you need to do to achieve this:

Work as a team

This is a big one! It takes teamwork to achieve customer-centricity in your business. Every department should consider the other departments to achieve this goal, which requires interaction between the different departments to make sure everyone is on the same page.

Allow staff input

The best way to put the customers in your employees’ thoughts is to ask them for their input because the more they think of ways to improve customer experience, the more customer-centric they get. Simple! But, do have some perspective on this to ensure that everybody knows what they need and how exactly they have to do it.


Be consistent with your message. You have to make sure that everyone sees the vision and feel like they can be a part of it. You must continue to demonstrate this goal and share it consistently. 


Undergoing some training may increase their knowledge and skills to learn customer-centric behaviours. 

In summary, customer-centricity is a win:win. It is the surest way for a business to grow. You generate more revenue, have satisfied employees and loyal customers. With this, you have a competitive edge over your rivals, especially the non-customer centric ones. d&t Chartered Accountants always put the customer first, that’s one of the reasons why we’re so successful.

Phil Archer
Phil Archer