4i Newsletter Masthead 435

Lesson from the pandemic.

Four i 435 Lesson Pandemic

At Property Academy’s two day ‘All Members’ event last week, Josh Phegan (Australia’s number one estate agency coach), highlighted how McDonalds had successfully navigated the pandemic to post record breaking financial results for 2021.

Josh suggested that when McDonalds was forced to close down its restaurant chain, right across the world, they adopted three tactics:

  • Digital
  • Drive Thru
  • Delivery

To my mind, McDonalds will look back on Covid19 with some degree of (perverse) gratitude, as it enabled them to nail CX3.0 (the third major change of customer experience), and offers a textbook lesson we can all learn from.

A quick recap of the first three eras of customer experience (note, there were many iterations between each of them):

CX1.0 “The Store” – people bought locally
CX2.0 “Brand” – from the late 1950’s onwards, brands became more important to customers than locality
CX3.0 “Digital” – since c.2000 it’s been an era of digital first

In order to deliver CX3.0 profitably and at scale, businesses need to reverse the old thinking of tech supporting people, to one of tech before people, i.e. only have people do things that only people can do, the rest should be automated.

Previously in CX2.0, McDonalds relied on employing teenagers, on minimum wage, to deliver their products as cheaply as possible.

As they found out though, throughout the first two decades of CX3.0 which they largely missed out on as their business stagnated, brand will only take you so far, and even the cheapest labour isn’t cheap enough: automation became essential.

Covid19 forced McDonalds to change tactics, to focus on digital, and their EBITDA, which had been static for a decade, soared by 34.69%

For me though, the big question for McDonalds, and others for that matter, is how to adapt operations to deliver CX4.0?

CX4.0 can be summarised as “Anticipative” – the customer wants three additional things over and above what they’ve had previously:

  • Functional & Uplifting
  • Consistent & Individual
  • Anticipated & Proactive

Of course, embracing CX3.0 in 12 months and transforming a business of the scale of McDonalds is extraordinary. But they had no option, (other than to fail in retreat), in the face of unprecedented competition as every restaurant pivoted to takeaway and delivery.

But without a pandemic to drive change, will they make the necessary changes to deliver CX4.0, or is it a return to flatline performance?

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