The 10 Stars Experience

Imaging beyond the status quo for your customers

Brian Chesky on customer experience

Community banking and credit unions are rooted in their service level, creating personalized experiences that delight and generate trust levels not found elsewhere in financial services.

To continue growing and evolving this critical capacity requires will and imagination.

For an example of pushing the envelope of customer experience, Mike McGuiness of the Startup Archive points to an interview with Airbnb co-founder and CEO Brian Chesky.

Brian talks through the exercise the team at Airbnb uses to stretch their team’s vision of what’s possible. Based on the storyboarding process of Disney animation, they aim to dissect the critical moment when a guest checks into their Airbnb. From there, they imagine a good experience step-wise increasing to an unbelievably awesome experience you’d remember for the rest of your life, the “10 Stars Experience”.

“How do you make something for a million people? I don’t know where to start. But if you pick one person, study them, and take their journey, you can actually build something really personal. You can design something and keep iterating until they love it. Don’t stop improving it until that person loves it, and you’re not allowed to move to the second person until the first person loves it. Then you get the second person and keep iterating until they love it. And so on.”

“A 5-star rating typically means nothing bad happened. But what if there was a 6th star?”

He proposes the following ever-improving scenarios:

6 stars: You get to your Airbnb and there’s a bottle of wine and fruit waiting for you with a hand-written note

7 stars: A limo picks you up from the airport, and when you get to the house there’s a surfboard because the host knows you like surfing

8 stars: You ride back from the airport on a giant elephant and there’s a parade in your honor

9 stars: You land at the airport and there’s 5,000 teenagers cheering your name and you do a press conference in the front lawn of your Airbnb (“ The Beetles Check-In”)

10 stars: Elon Musk picks you up from the airport and says “we’re going to space”

Brian’s full interview at Stanford Graduate School of Business here (keyed to start at the experience discussion):

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