Great employee and customer experience models are based on a person's emotional needs.
Just because you can easily find a school for your children, schedule an appointment to speak to the superintendent, and enroll your kids in a school district — doesn't necessarily mean you feel good about your experience with that school district.
We're emotional beings and often make decisions based on how we feel about something. Was the person you called friendly and knowledgeable? Did the people you first met make you feel comfortable and appreciated? Your emotional impression of something is often dependent upon your good or bad interactions with it. As highly social animals, we tend to tell our friends and family about the experiences we have during the day. Amplified across hundreds of families, and for generations, that emotional experience can have a dramatic impact on the future of any school district, good, bad, or indifferent.
A school district that focuses on inspiring positive emotions believes they can influence the parent in some way. Consider a superintendent who seems defeatist about their ability to make everyone happy. He might say that people generally don't know how much a good superintendent costs, so whether he meets the parents standards or not, the parents need him more than he needs these particular sets of parents. In contrast, a more emotionally-centered superintendent might say that their parents and students are happier than ever because their staff is focused on delivering great service.
Indifferent isn't bad
Educational experience standards have stagnated over the years because school districts aren’t focused on emotion. There is a current trend of school districts not rising above their competition and this only creates "okay," but rarely good, and never excellent, customer experiences.
42% of consumers would pay more for a friendly, welcoming experience. — CMO.com
Yet, all is not lost. If a person is indifferent, they can easily be drawn to a competitor who delivers good emotional interactions. According to a PwC study, 42% of consumers would pay more for a friendly, welcoming experience. And 73% said a good experience is key in influencing their company loyalties.
School districts are a good example of where indifferent could be elevated to excellent. While administration and staff needs to follow procedures to help parents and students receive educational benefits, they don’t have to sound unfeeling. Most parents will settle for indifference at school districts as long as they meet their practical needs. But that often results in an indifferent or bad experience. The emotional outcome changes when staff seems to care about another person's needs. A frustrated parent might melt with relief and gratitude. An indifferent parent might become a loyal school district advocate.
Empathy is king
Creating positive emotional educational experiences for parents and children should be every school district's goal. It’s important to develop a clear educational experience "road map" to assist administration and staff on how to bring that vision to every day life. At Insights Muse, Inc., we use forensics data analysis, focus groups, and hands on journey mapping with key stakeholders, to help businesses design their customer and employee experiences around the power of positive emotion.