Being over 115 years old, Ford Motor Company has a rich history behind it, being one of the most recognized brands on the planet. The American multinational was founded by Henry Ford when he was 39 years old, and the company has been in family control for more than 100 years, being one of the largest family-controlled companies in the world. Ford became a publicly traded company in 1956, with the Ford family retaining 40% voting rights. When it comes to the 21st century, the company managed to bounce back after the financial crisis, and had a global revenue of $156.7 billion in 2017.
Recently, the company took notice of big brands (such as Apple and Amazon) naming top executives in order to eliminate problem regarding customer experience, and named Elena Ford as the Chief Customer Experience Officer. She is the great-great granddaughter of Henry Ford, and the daughter of Charlotte Ford, who is an heiress to the Ford Motor Company fortune.
During an interview with the Free Press, Elena Ford talked about the Ford customer experience, noting that loyalty is very important, and that the company wants to be thoughtful and caring about how they handle situations. During a statement after being named Chief Customer Experience Officer she stated that the company sees where the pain points are, and that they are improving them.
In order to prepare for her new role, she spent time in Beijing and Dallas, and studied customer behavior as well as corporate strategies worldwide when it comes to identifying problems which plague the customers. Elena Ford stated that the effort to improve customer experience is global, the mission being active in China, Europe, Brazil, and throughout the Untied States. Noting that Ford does a lot to attract customers, she said that the company needs to worry about people coming back and about re-energizing them, as they want to keep customers in the Ford family.
She worked with Jim Hackett (the current CEO of Ford) and Bill Ford (the Executive Chairman of the Board) in order to create a plan designed towards improving customer engagement. Joe Hinrichs, the company’s President of Global Operations talked about Elena Ford, stating that she is the ideal leader to take on the challenge of bringing the company to world-class levels when it comes to customer experience. According to him, she has deep connections with the company’s dealers, and has genuine passion and focus on doing what is right for Ford’s customers.