Within our interview series, we had a chance to talk to Lorraine Millard, National Lounge Manager for Virgin Money, about winning two awards at the recently held UK Financial Services Experience Awards and the importance of team motivation and recognition.
CXM: Congratulations on the amazing success at this year’s UK Financial Services Experience Awards! Apart from winning at two categories: Best Innovation and Employee Engagement ‘Improving CX’, you were also the Overall Winner of the Awards? Can you tell us more about the “winning feeling” after being recognized as the overall best?
Lorraine: It was a fantastic feeling to win the two awards. The whole team was euphoric and it’s so rewarding to have our efforts recognised particularly when we’re so passionate about what we have delivered both for the good of customers and colleagues. To be named winner of one award was great, but to win the overall award was just brilliant.
CXM: What’s interesting is that your company won in two categories that cover both aspects: innovation in customer experience and employee engagement. Is that the secret of success in general, combining the two?
Lorraine: Most definitely. We believe that delivering an outstanding customer experience goes hand-in-hand with having the right culture and really engaged colleagues who are motivated to do the right things.
CXM: Can you tell us more about your winning initiative? What made it stand out from a number of superb initiatives presented at the event?
Our customer Lounges are unique in UK banking and truly embody our ethos of ‘Everyone’s Better Off’. Our Lounges are about more than money and banking – they are designed to be places where our customers can relax and local communities come together. They are all part of our ambition to be a very different kind of bank.
Lounge membership is completely free, and so are the refreshments, Wi-Fi and use of our iPads. You’re also welcome to bring a friend or family member in with you. We are very proud of our Lounges and how they benefit our customers, colleagues, the community, our corporate partners and of course our company too.
CXM: You had to go through a day of presentations in front of the panel of judges for different categories as the final test. How would you describe the whole day at the Awards?
Lorraine: We thoroughly enjoyed the day, it was a great experience. There were some challenging questions following the delivery of your presentation, but we had prepared properly and felt confident in our replies.
The organisation of the awards was excellent and it was great to meet like-minded people from different businesses, who are also hoping to be recognised for their efforts. It’s always a great day.
CXM: Does your team feel motivated to keep the pace of providing the award-winning CX, what effect did this award have on the whole company?
Lorraine: We are definitely motivated to keep striving to achieve more and deliver exceptional service to our customers. Examples of great customer service are communicated to the whole company every week by our CEO, Jayne-Anne Gadhia, and our award win was included in one of the updates so everyone could share in the moment and feel good about what we do, every single day.
CXM: Is there a secret of success for the future nominees?
Lorraine: It’s vital that you are confident in what you have to offer, and you take the time needed to prepare an excellent submission and presentation on the day. I think the combination of real innovation in customer experience, and full employee engagement in its delivery is also key.