I call this health blog “Curved Roads”. Curved roads are not efficient; they take more tar to build. They are not the shortest way to a destination so they impact our gas use and they take more time to get somewhere. Yet, there is a grace and beauty in them as they follow the contours of the land and we enjoy them. Curved roads can offer an amazing experience for us. In healthcare, we forgot about the customer experience and we need some curved roads to remind us that efficiency is only part of the satisfaction equation. Consumer centricity needs to be embraced in a payer’s culture if payers wish to engage their members and providers.
LL Bean has been quoted in many industries. The L.L. Bean mission is to live this Golden Rule … “Sell good merchandise at a reasonable profit, treat your customers like human beings and they will always come back for more.” LL Bean’s definition of a customer is, “A customer is the most important person ever in this company – in person or by mail.” A simple understanding of consumer centricity. Do we treat customers like the most important person?
I’m going to spend some time over the next couple of weeks talking about this subject with a model that shows a connection. Are they connected?
An immediate answer comes to mind, “Yes, absolutely they are connected.” But how and why? What happens when you have a great product but a poor experience. Is it a commodity. Is experience the new differentiator? I have some ideas to share with you from a health care perspective.
Companies launch products and services to consumers with the thought that their product will offer so much value to the consumer without considering the bigger picture. It is a holistic view of the consumer experience that matters if consumer centricity is to be attained. The combination of a product’s functionally and the experience it offers sets a condition for potential consumer engagement and relationship development. Translating this to health care, it is important for payers in health care to focus on providing information and tools so members can do the job of managing their health while offering a connected experience to simplify and navigate the complex maze of health care.