By Kym Gordon Moore
No doubt our world is rapidly changing through assorted technological manifestations. Our business practice is ladled with scoops of artificial technology, augmented and virtual reality. We seek to do things faster to save time, yet sometimes we seem to need more time to do our tasks faster. Sounds like an oxymoron? Yeah, well it is.
As a consumer, personally going through self-scanning checkouts keep me from standing in a long line and getting frustrated, although at times I want to talk to that cashier and have a personal interaction a machine can’t convey. When I call technical support or attempt to reach a specific department for assistance, I don’t always want to talk to an automated message because if I accidentally press an incorrect number, I have to start the process all over again. If I need a problem taken care of, I tend to put more value in human interaction, at least for acknowledging the problem and offering to help solve it, even if automation is a bit more accurate.
After examining a few unofficial polls, at times people noted they tend to feel alienated because artificial devices are replacing that human connection. Upon talking to many consumers, they sometimes express they feel like a number or inanimate object when they only interact with artificial intelligence vs. natural human intelligence. Yet, there’s an overwhelming number of consumers who are unmoved by the absence of human contact. The world they are accustomed to is mostly automated.
We find ourselves so entrapped by our smart devices, that we don’t even have eye to eye contact with each other anymore. We don’t stop and smell the roses because virtual flowers on apps, graphic images or memes entertain our sight and senses. We don’t observe the obvious that stands before us because we are being navigated by a computer led artificial compass which redirects and repositions.
Life is not an invisible touch, even in our technological savvy lifestyle. As we reflect on our business operations, let’s not forget to personalize our services, not simply through the personalized greeting in an email or generic letter, but by using our vocal cords to have interpersonal connections, as we reach out and touch the soul of another…the soul of our customer. Perhaps we have to get back to basics and learn how to truly “listen” again.