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Why Innovation Should Not Be the Only Driver of an eLearning Company


As a customer, how do you judge whether your eLearning company puts more faith in its technology than its employees and customers?

  1. You’ve had technical questions and you have to battle to find a phone number for customer support.

  2. The email for customer support has no specific contact name.

  3. The last time you heard from this company was during the initial training.

  4. When you do hear from your eLearning company you get the impression that the employees are not very happy to be there.

  5. You have yet to be invited to a Users’ Conference.

  6. You’re rarely approached by the company to share ideas for future development.

  7. You have no rapport with your account representative.

 Working on an eLearning platform should be a gratifying experience, but as it is with all technology, there will certainly come a time when its users will ask questions of it.

Innovation should not be the only driver of an eLearning company.

Herb Kelleher, one of the founders of Southwest Airlines, once said:

The essential difference in service is not machines or ‘things.’ The essential difference is minds, hearts, spirits, and souls.

Too many companies – eLearning and others – have either forgotten this, or have falsely believed that technology itself can replace what used to be referred to as ‘Customer Service’. Southwest Airlines may not be an eLearning company, but it has set a benchmark for customer service that has stood the test of time. One wonders why so many other companies never duplicated Herb’s creed? Perhaps they relied too heavily on technology for ‘customer support’ and that customer retention could simply be achieved via competitive pricing.

 The irony is that we are all customers. At Magnifi Group, all our employees shop – be it for groceries, cars, furniture, you name it. We all have a personal experience, or three, about great customer service and terrible customer service. When we come into work each day, it’s not that difficult to ‘be the customer’; to empathize with a client who calls or emails us with a question. How many times have we emailed a company with a question and wondered when we would get a response? When we purchase a product from an online store, and one with good customer service, the first thing we get is a confirmation email and a tracking number to verify the real-time movement of our product. Why should it be any different if customers email a company with a question? We may not have the answers right away, but a simple reply informing our customers we are in receipt of their questions and that we will get back to them within the next hour, or two, goes a long way. Simply put, it’s a winning strategy to ensure that our customers are aware that we are aware.

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